Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Don Hatfield's Workshop

Hat Dance
Original oil painting 24x18"
by Susan Roux

Everything is in order. The venue is booked, the local Inn has reduced rates for you and Don Hatfield is definitely coming to Maine in July to teach you. He's laid out all the specifics on his blog, so I won't regurgitate here. Just go pay him a visit.

I will tell you that you need to sign up through me. So if you're interested or thinking about it and need an extra nudge, contact me. There are four 3-day slots you could be booked into, so in order to keep it all straight, Don has me in charge of registration. If you are interested in being in the same class as a friend, let me know.

I told you about Don's humorous side and today I want to tell you about his dedication to teaching anyone who is driven to improve. Yes, I said dedication.

We are all aware that college art degrees nowadays fall very short of teaching the real principles of art and painting. It's been common knowledge that if an artist desires to really learn the specifics they must do so through an apprenticeship, mentorship or workshops. The real secrets are handed down from seasoned artists to beginners and intermediates. As time marches on, the greats of today are sensitive to this and want to ensure that the knowledge continues through generations and time.

As I see it, it's our purpose to learn as much as we can in order to pass our knowledge along. Otherwise, art and painting as we know it will be a dying art...

Here's where Don Hatfield comes in. He's interested in teaching you. Really teaching you. I hosted him last July and he taught a workshop to the locals. Since then I've been in weekly communication with him. Phone calls, emails, skype... you name it. Anything and everything I could do to keep him informed on my progress. If you've been following me since then, you know my drive to improve has been very strong. I have Don's support to thank for this. He's continually feeding me bits of information that help me progress forward.

I never knew what it would be like to have a mentor. Now that I have one, I can't possibly tell you how amazing it is. I've been teaching for years and find it so nice to have someone I can bounce my ideas off of and get real valuable input in return. It's like having the best teacher in the world at your disposal. Wow!

When you read his workshop page and he makes mention of staying as much in touch as you desire, he isn't kidding. Aside from the initial workshop fee, he asks nothing of you except to work hard at improving. How can you beat that? It's the deal of the century!

So incase you're sitting on the fence, wondering if you should sign up or not, do so. You won't regret it. Don won't try to mold you into something else. You can still paint your way. What he will do is teach you about relationships and open your mind and eyes to things you most likely miss. He's mastered it and can offer each person what they require for advancement. Many of my beginner students will be taking his workshop, so don't think you aren't advanced enough to take it. He'll help you at any level.

Hat Dance is my latest painting. I didn't refine her as much as the others in this series. For some reason I really liked her initial block in. She looked so fresh and summery. I decided to keep her and work the background to compliment the look. Each one of these evolves. I've been having so much fun. That's not to say I don't get frustrated from time to time, but watching them evolve on canvas, taking on a life, a personality of their own is a wonderful experience. I never know where it's going to take me when I begin...

Don't forget to sign up for Don's workshop. He won't teach you tricks or gimmicks just the real fundamentals that will help you improve. (Plus you'll get to meet me!)


  1. Another beautiful painting Susan! Thanks for the testimonial on Don's workshop. I am really, really, interested in attending. I have airline miles I have to use this summer and a trip to Maine and his workshop sounds like a perfect plan. Karla

  2. Susan it sounds so fun. Wish I could get to Maine this is definitely on my list of "someday"! Don sounds like a wonderful teacher. I hope you have a wonderful turnout!

  3. I love this series of paintings--how much time does it take you to paint one?

  4. That an interesting painting. Summer time, summer time ! I'm waiting for wearing my hat.

  5. I love your paintings so much Susan. The series you are doing is so beautiful and so feminine.

    Oh how I wish I lived in Maine to be able to do the workshop.

  6. Grace and beauty, water and waves, perfection! I would so love to have a mentor. The best I can do is through my blog and the artists who always visit and try to keep me encouraged. I haven't the time or money for the workshops, at least not right now. Still, I am not sure how to find them. I have even been thinking of trying to start some sort of art guild or something. We have a watercolor group here in town (my favorite of the mediums) but they meet during the day on Fridays. I have to work so can't get there. Sigh...

  7. L'invitation à participer à ce workshop animé et enseigné par Don est aussi tentante et provocante que que votre dernière petite lady ma chère!...
    Je pense que Don s'arracherait les cheveux avec mon style de peinture !!
    Gros bisous à toi... ton amie

  8. The painting is wonderful! Glad you left her at this point! I wish I could go to the workshop. It sounds like it's going to be awesome!


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