Summer Holiday Upskilling

Good morning,

I hope everyone is well and finding some time to get creative. I have been super busy during my holidays and have not had a lot of time to paint or scrap. Every holiday I try and sneak in a little skill building in the Arts. This holiday I have spent a week at the Albany Summer School learning about coloured pencil technique with Marie Haass and contemporary ink practice with Leanne White.

It is such a joy to spend time with others who are passionate about art and getting creative. As a group, we all had such a great time and shared our knowledge. Within the coloured pencil class, there were some very talented artists with only a few beginners to the art of drawing but many students had not really used coloured pencils as an artistic medium. Most of us had only used coloured pencils as children or during the recent meditation colouring book craze which seemed to take over the World! So, we were all very keen to participate and upskill ourselves.

Marie Haass has had years of experience working as both an artist and teacher, she has lectured many students during their university studies. She was an excellent teacher. She is very welcoming and encouraging and reads and recognises the talents of her students. Marie adjusts her teaching style to suit the student’s needs, she works one on one with each student and doesn’t hold people back but lets them explore the medium through a series of activities and observation drawings. It was really a fun experience listening to Marie share her knowledge and life experiences, we laughed a lot and shared lots of our own stories during the five days.

We started off learning about blending colour pencils and applying a variety of pressures to create a vast range of colours and techniques. I and a few others occasionally img_5438(well…often) got reminded to start off with light pressure. I struggled somewhat with this, being a girl who loves strong bright colours, I found it challenging to hold back! Then, we moved on to observation drawing, our subject being onions! Yes, who knew that onions could be so interesting and prove quite challenging.


Next, we worked on a piece using shells from the Albany beaches. Shells up close are fascinating with the range of colours and patterns they have. We also had to include some shell chocolates within our image, I was the only student to score a prawn chocolate! Everyone enjoyed the challenge and it was a great way to put our blending skills and pressure skills into play.

In the contemporary ink class, Leanne White took us through a huge range of ways to use ink. Leanne is a very talented artist who illustrates children books using a range of mediums and has worked as a professional artist and teacher of the arts for many years. She is located where I live, right in the middle of town, it was funny that I travelled all the way to Albany to participate in one of her classes.

We explored a huge range of inks, bottled ink, ink crayons/pencils, ink pens and mediums and different papers. After three days of play and experimentation, we were img_5357encouraged to get creative and work on some final pieces which incorporated all our new knowledge and skills. It was a lot of fun, I used my mixed media obsession and splashed around a lot of ink and colour. Once again, many of us shared our knowledge and skills, and in the process taught each other different techniques, where to buy supplies at the best price, and we made some great friendships.

Now, to use these new skills in my scrapbooking. I am thinking that I could perhaps hand draw some coloured pencil embellishments and make some more amazing backgrounds incorporating various ink mediums. Oh, the possibilities!

Keep on crafting everyone 🙂

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