Wednesday, March 25, 2009
My portrait painting class is starting up again at the end of April, and it will run for five weeks. Here is the class description and information:
PORTRAIT PAINTING IN OIL
Students will be painting portraits with a consistent color framework using complementary colors. We will study the relationship between light, atmosphere, and shadow; and work on creating the feeling of "air" and depth around the figure. We will also focus on value relationships, edge quality, and composition. All work will be from the live model. Drawing experience recommended; experience with oils helpful.
MONDAYS, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
$130. for 5-week session
Class runs from April 27 to June 1
No class on May 25 (Memorial Day)
To register for the class, or to obtain more information, please contact the Wayne Art Center in Wayne, PA
Saturday, March 7, 2009
In the April ("Portrait") issue ofThe Artist's Magazine is a feature article on my portraits entitled "In Their Element."
The writer, Christine Proskow, interviewed me a few months ago, and I was impressed with her intelligent and thoughtful questions and insights. I was even more impressed with the article she wrote, and with the editors Maureen Bloomfield and Chris McHugh. Working with these three women was an experience of cooperation, respect, and creativity. It was very exciting to see the article. The reproductions are excellent, too.
Above you can see the cover of the issue, which features the work of David Wells.
To read an online excerpt from the article (about a work in progress), click here.
Monday, March 2, 2009
On a recent trip to the West Coast, we visited the home of one of my most faithful collectors. I can't believe it was about twenty years ago that she first commissioned me to paint a portrait of her granddaughter. Soon after that, I painted her two grandsons. That was in the '80s. By the '90s she had two more grandchildren, and she commissioned a double portrait of them. A few years ago I painted a full-length portrait of her youngest granddaughter.
It was almost overwhelming to find that she and her husband had decorated an entire room to showcase the portraits. Of course this is not really about my artwork--it's about her grandchildren--but nevertheless I did not expect to walk into a room and be surrounded by my own artwork. I suspect I am not alone in feeling embarrassed by this. Artists are notoriously self-critical, especially about their own work, and if it was painted 20 years ago the feeling is more intense. At the same time, it was like seeing an abbreviated version of the development of my style, which can be a very enlightening experience. I think the most important thing about seeing ones artwork in someone's home is realizing that art isn't completely frivolous, that the opportunity to create something that brings happiness to someone else has a value.