Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Snowcamp 2011

I have returned from Snowcamp. That is the "extreme painting" workshop I teach every winter in the White Mountains. It was a great time, I get the most wonderful students. On Friday night a small group of them went with me to see a band play. Saturday morning we were out in the snow at nine AM and I worked them like borrowed mules for three days.

Snow painting is , I guess< my specialty. I have done an awful lot of it and enjoy it more than any other time of year. It gives so much potential for designing the canvas.Here is one of the two demonstration paintings that I made. I worked on this for two mornings. I changed the thing around a lot. Here is what was really there. I left out the swimming pool and it's railing and turned the house into a period cape. I also made the line of the mountain in the back more varied. It was too much of a whale profile. I will work this up in the studio when I get a chance. I always do that. Many plein air societies have a rule that the painting needs to be done on location or only see 10% studio work. I don't qualify as a plein air painter by their definition, maybe I am not.....

Below are a few of my ten students ( I limit class size to ten) out in the snow with their easels. It wasn't really all that cold I think it was up to fifteen one day. We got two days with occasional snow and one bright, clear and cold day.

Below is the other demo from the three day workshop. In the afternoons I run from easel to easel to give each student as much individual teaching as I can, That is exhausting!

I look forward to Snowcamp every year. We are all in that big old Victorian inn on a ridge overlooking the whole Presidential range. We park our cars and let the snow cover them. We eat there and work long hours. We all eat together breakfast and dinner around a big round table in our private dining room.There is a lot of camaraderie and the students meet other painters and get to know them. Many friends have been made each year at Snowcamp and they exchange addresses and paint together after the workshop is over.

I make a point of being the last to leave the inn when it is over. As I load my equipment into my car I am always a little sad that it is over again. I had all these playmates, and then they all went home. Oh well, I will do it all again next Snowcamp.


Philip Koch said...

I love Stape's description of his Snowcamp. There can be quite a bond that connects students and teachers, even in a class of just a few days. And it can be a little sad when it's over. Thinking back to the best of the painting teachers I had years ago , my heart swells a little with warm feeling. We humans are an emotional bunch of critters.

Great photos in this post! Especially like the concluding shot of the intriguing oil on Stape's easel with the mountain panorama in back.

mariandioguardi.com said...

Yeah...that last one is going to be a winner. The day was beautiful . best of all was watching Stapleton tackle the bright snow that looks like white but that gets painted like an opal.

I hate good byes ..so it is a seeya later to all who were there.

Don't tell anyone but I saw Stapleton Kearns use cadmium orange in his snow...how modernist can you get!?

Mary Bullock said...

I find it particularly helpful when you post your painting and the photo of the view it is taken from - it really helps us see your thought process (what you moved, what you left out, etc.) for those of us who can't make it to your snowcamp. Thank you for posting these.

Nita Leger Casey said...

We were all sad to leave also,it was a great week end , a little warmer than last one ,we learned how to master snow fields and trees,I do love the instant camaraderie at that big round table, James is probably dreaming about that wonderful bread pudding,to die for!
might paint a snow scene from my window today, we have plenty snow to paint.
thanks again.Nita

JAMES A. COOK said...

You run the best workshop. I feel like a mule that has been worked for three days , oh but what a better painter I am now for it. Thank you for everything, I think you are a great teacher and glad you are mine. You help me out everytime during your workshops and every time I learn something. The SUNSET HOUSE is THE BEST. All the people who run it couldn't be nicer. I have dreams of there bread pudding. I need to go back.
To all my fellow painters during snowcamp, I love you all and may we again paint together some day.

willek said...

Every picture you do for us is a lesson. No question. I think the owners of the little red cabin should engage an architect to make their place look like the one in your picture.

Mary Byrom said...

I totally get the immersion painting bonding thing. It makes me want to head back out to the Teton Valley every October...
Stapleton, that mountain panorama is looking good!

billspaintingmn said...

I can only read and drool!
To be a barrowed mule..

Stape! I've got my new easel set up! I am learning quite a lot from your posts! I practice every chance I can. This easel from Tobin
is the coolest! Thanks for the heads up, I feel supported!:)

If I can ever get a class,
I just might kick some ass!

Claire Bull said...

Wonderful !! Sounds like a great time and would very much enjoy being part of that someday... your painting is so much better than the image - love the way you painted it, Stape
Always start my day off with your blog posts, thank you!!!

Brady said...

I love the painting of the red house. Even on my screen it looks iridescent.

Whenever I get enough cash I'm going to sign up for one of your snow camps.

Now if only they made the Trans Alaska's in size 14...

Stapleton Kearns said...

I get attached to them, can I help that?

Stapleton Kearns said...

That is simply not true. I didn't do it.

Stapleton Kearns said...

You are welcome.

Stapleton Kearns said...

That big round table is very social.

Stapleton Kearns said...

Thank you. What is it with bread pudding. I guess you have to be a Yankee to eat that, particularly instead of apple pie with ice cream.

Stapleton Kearns said...

They probably wouldn't like it better.

Stapleton Kearns said...

Thanks, now I can emasculate it in the studio.

Stapleton Kearns said...

I hope you like that easel!

Stapleton Kearns said...

Thanks. Tomorrow morning I do some posturing and snarling.

Stapleton Kearns said...

I guess they don't make em that big huh. Maybe someone else makes a big boot that will work. If you could only get your feet back into the middle of the bell curve.

Brady said...

I guess I could chop off a half inch, but I'm afraid I would terribly miss it no matter if it came from the back or front.

Tony Perrotta said...

Would love to attend Snow Camp, I need to be saved from years and years of trying to paint outdoors, trying to paint period !!