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Location: Lakeville Area Center for the Arts, 20965 Holyoke Ave, Lakeville, MN
Hours:  9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Dates:   Nov. 1-3, 2-16
Cost: $280 members, $300 nonmembers
Contact: Suzi McArdle

This workshop will start with everyone learning how to paint little abbeys, which is Karen’s nickname for small abstracts (5” x 7”.  These are “no fail” small abstracts that are so fun to do and they take the fear out of doing abstracts.  Students will learn how to think about glowing colors and also will learn the process of adding collage.  Then on days 2 and 3, students will use one of their “little abbeys” as a starting point to produce at least a half sheet painting, using watercolor and collage.  They can choose whether they want something semi-abstract or a completely abstract painting.  Karen starts every painting, thinking in terms of simple shapes, and good design and she will be teaching many design tips as the days progress.  Fun easy techniques, such as graphite and metallic will be shared too, so everyone will be excited to add special effects to make their paintings stand out from the crowd!  Karen has been teaching watercolor, collage, and acrylic workshops for 25 years and teaches workshops all across the United States.  She gives lots of individual help as well as fun demonstrations.

Supply List

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Supply list: 

  1. 1 or 2 sheets of Arches 140 pound cold press paper and a board to use for support. (We will probably be working on quarter sheets or half sheets, so bring a board about that size.  Use either gator board or I prefer a plywood board.)  Or watercolor blocks work well also.  I usually like to cut the paper to size each day, because I work on odd sized papers. (The first day, we will be doing small 5” x 7” paintings, so bring any papers that are small in size for that.)

  2. #2  Pencil, eraser

  3. Sketch pad or notebook for taking notes.

  4. Tracing paper

  5. Graphite paper

  6. Watercolor brushes (bring your favorites) I use 1” flat and ½ “flat, and a small (#6) round brush. 

  7. Water containers (old Cool Whip containers work great) bring 2.

  8. Masking tape (¾” and 1 ½”or 2”) My favorite is Manco brand or Duck brand, which can be purchased at Fleet Farm or Walmart. (Get neutral colors. No blue; it affects your color choices.)

  9. Ruler

  10. Masking fluid (optional)  I use Pebeo brand, because of it’s fluidity and that it is grey in color. 

  11. Kleenex brand tissues (because they pop up for easy grabbing)

  12. Sponge or rag for wiping off your brushes.

  13. Margarita salt or table salt

  14. Spray bottle (I use a push button top, old Windex bottle.  You can usually get these at Holiday gas stations.)

  15. Blow dryer (optional)

  16. Bring your palette filled with your usual colors, making sure that you let them dry in the palette for one or two days.  (The reason for this, is that I double load colors and if they are fresh out of the tube, you won’t be able to do this procedure.  However, if you are used to using fresh watercolors, you may do that.)  Because everyone always asks, my palette is as follows.  I use mainly transparent colors.  (Please do not feel that you must go out and buy these colors.  The most important 5 colors are listed first.) Aureolin yellow, permanent rose (or DaVinci red rose deep), cobalt blue, winsor green, alizarin crimson, antwerp blue,  French ultramarine blue, manganese blue, cerulean blue, quinacridone gold, burnt sienna, permanent magenta, neutral tint, winsor red, and scarlet lake.

  17. Camera (optional) If you want to take photos of my demonstration in progress, that’s OK with me.

  18. Gauze or cheese cloth. (optional)

  19. Acrylic Matte Medium and old brush (for applying it) and a plastic container with lid (for storing it.)

  20. Collage papers-bring whatever you have.  (I will have kits for you to purchase, if you’d like.)  I like chiri paper (transparent), and unryu fiber paper, which is a milky white fiber paper with strings in it and it is semi-transparent.  Bring whatever other oriental papers you might already have.  Napkins and magazines can be used for collage, also, so start saving those.  My favorite magazine for collaging is Architectural Digest.  Try to think of variety in colors and textures. Any metallic ribbons, old books, music books, etc. Also, (old paintings that you don’t like) can be used in collage.

  21. Bring one package of colorful, repetitive napkins, and we’ll have a napkin swap.

  22. Black permanent marker (ultrafine and fine tips).   I like the Sharpie that is a twin top.

  23. Gold Foil paper (available at Hobby Lobby) or

  24. Double stick tape (small dispenser type, available at Michaels.)

  25. Optional:  Tulip Slick dimensional paint (comes in a tube) ( I use black, teal, and white colors)

  26. Optional:   White and black acrylic paints (if you have them.)

  27. Optional:  Pebeo Porcelaine gold outliner (this is in a tube and can be found in the glass painting section of Michaels or available in the Cheap Joes catalog)

  28. Optional:  Caran d’ache water soluble crayons

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