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August 3rd and 4th 2013 – Cambridge Workshop with Chris

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Workshop Review

Well The Weekend Workshop packed its trunk and said goodbye to Liverpool, it jumped on the train and head south!

The first workshop outside of Liverpool has been and gone and what a great weekend it was! I travelled down to meet Chris and John on the Friday, John kindly offered Chris and I a place to lay our heads for the evening. Waking up nicely refreshed after a geeky evening of miniature talk we head out. After battling through traffic we arrived at the Inner Sanctum, this was my first time at the venue, after several recommendations and a favourable review from Chris I must say it surpassed my expectation, very well lit, central location with plenty of space!

I got Chris set up and handed out the ogres so everyone could start, I gave a brief introduction to who I was and who Chris was and then outlined the timetable for the next 2 days. As everyone started to build their ogres Chris took over, he took everyone through how he primes and why be prime the way he does. After Chris took everyone through how basecoats using wetblending and I took the opportunity to take some pictures.

As the students began to give Chris’ wetblending a try I took the chance to speak with Alan, along with his wife Jacqueline, Alan runs the store of a day and their son Graham covers the evening shifts, it was great to finally put a face to the name after so many emails.

Before moving on to how to extending the already established highlights and shadows Chris started working through the students one by one to ensure they were getting to grips with wetblending. Whilst speaking about extending light and dark contrast he also spoke about temperature contrast and how introducing warm and cold tones can really increase the visual impact of a model. We all then took a half hour break for lunch, raiding the local shops for food!

When we came back the students really got stuck into their ogres, the progress was rapid and the time flew past. At the end of the day I must say I was very impressed at how well everyone had grasped Chris’ wetblending style, the ogres on display were showing some great use of colour and nice levels of contrast.

We retired for the evening to a local Mexican restaurant where we learnt about Polish custard, John’s medical history and Luke’s own brand of paintball and mentos inspired parenting! We also found out that Cambridge has some of the best live music bands around!! (Well, maybe not the best, but pretty decent, well, maybe not pretty decent, but, they were probably ‘ok’, well alright, alright, maybe not ok, but, let me put it this way, they weren’t in the bottom 1500 live bands going, ok, well, they probably were, but you know, at least gave it a good go! God loves a tryer and all that!)

After speaking to some of the students during the meal we decided to relax the timetable a little for the second day so we could free up some time to teach a few requested techniques. Chris started the day as planned, taking a page out of his colossus book and demonstrating his high contrast living metallics, Chris took students through how he achieves such high contrast using a mixture of using a mixture of colour, luminesce and light/dark contrast. We decided to take a break at that point to allow people just to process the information and that break quickly because lunch as we all realised what time it was!

After Lunch all the students received some 1 on 1 time from both me and Chris, Chris was explaining some of the ideas and techniques that were requested as I was helping people push the contrast on their ogres as well as tightening up the paintjob. As afternoon continued everyone was making excellent progress, Chris gave one last talk before a couple of our workshopeers had to leave, giving his ogre a snazzy pair of blue pants as well going back over the contrast principles we had both talked about already, we followed this up with more feedback for everyone, with further tweaks and refinements suggest the workshop drew to an end, 5.30pm struck and we started packing up, although we were still there gone 6 o’clock chatting away about all sorts of geeky things!

I just want to thank everyone who helped contribute to the weekend, to the students, you guys and girls were a pleasure to teach and genuinely both Chris and I were impressed at how quickly you got to grips with the complex ideas and techniques being taught, to Alan, Jacqueline and Graham at Inner Sanctum, thank you for being perfect hosts, both Chris and I felt well received and our students felt very welcome! I look forward to organising more workshops with you in the future (if you will have our noisy rabble back in the future of course!). I also want to thank Chris, workshops with yourself are always straight forward and without fuss!

Pupil Comments

Luke wrote: “OK. Gonna chime in with my thanks. Thanks to Chris for some excellent tuition. It really was great. Nothing was an issue, even the personal tuition was a really good surprise.
Also thank you for the little goodies Chris. Now how do I get the Baby doll off of you. :( ;)
Thanks to John for the organization of not just the day time, but sorting out the evening meal too. Oh and I have never drank so much…………….water! Next time I am going to drink…..I hope. ;)
Echo what John said it was really good to meet people, although for me it was practically new people all round for me:D
This most definitely won’t be my last one. Got loads of idea from it, so for me a very productive weekend.
Here’s where I got to on the weekend.)

Marta wrote: “great weekend. thank you guys.
I learned a lot, and I hope I’ll be able to incorporate that knowledge into my style.”

John wrote: “We had an extremely enjoyable day yesterday, focusing on wet blending, contrast in it’s different forms, skin and the overall scheme. Chris and John gave us all some constructive help and feedback too. Even having done one or two of these before I’m still learning and having those moments where being shown a little thing makes massive difference.Of course it’s always good to meet new and old friends too. :) Bring on day two!”

Jay wrote: “This was my first painting class of any kind and it was a truly unforgettable experience. I learnt new techniques, got to meet one of the true master (and a genuine good guy), made new friends and contracts and most importantly got INSPIRED! Happy painting everybody!”

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