Friday, April 6, 2012

Don Hatfield Workshop 2012

Nature's Dance
Original oil painting  12x36"
by Susan Roux

Basic fundamentals. I can't say enough on the importance of them. I don't care how seasoned an artist you are or if you're just a beginner, those fundamentals are of utmost importance to the representational painter. Sure there's creativity and you may want to simplify things in your own way as part of your creative voice. But without a clear understanding of the fundamentals, your work will remain a hit or miss sort of thing. Some are good and other's ...not so much. 

The artist's journey is lifelong for most of us. In this journey we strive to find our unique voice and hope to see continued growth. We're usually our worse critics, often allowing that terrible voice inside to spook us.  Art is a very revealing thing. It's pouring yourself out on canvas, exposed to the masses. Criticism crushes often giving voice to that inner demon. The best way to arm yourself against it is having clear knowledge of the basic fundamentals.

How good is your foundation? Solid? Shifting? Crumbly? Wouldn't it be great to answer Solid with confidence?

I for one, would like more confidence in that department...

Don Hatfield. It's not uncommon for his name to pop up on this blog. (By now, I think it's even surpassed Luka Bloom! How can that be???) Don is not only my mentor, he has grown to be a very dear friend. The longer I know him, the more he amazes me. As an artist, I've admired his work since I first came upon it in the early '90's. His voice is filled with soft beautiful color and arrangements that let the viewer dream. Serolla and Sargent are among his favorites and it's easy to see signs of their inspiration in his work. Basic fundamentals are strong in all these great artists.

Nowadays, you can sign up for workshops from all sorts of "masters". I can't vouch for their teaching abilities. I can however vouch for Don's. His focus is Basic Fundamentals. Improve on those and your art improves. Plain and simple.

Are you finding yourself stagnating? Could your art use a little more Punch? Definition? Impact? Emotion? Are you having trouble elevating to the next level? 

The answer lies in the fundamentals.

I'm so excited to be hosting Don Hatfield again this year for a series of workshops in early August. Actual dates and specifics will be announced soon. Don will teach 3 separate 3-day workshops: portraiture, still life and figurative in costume. Cost for the 3-day sessions is a reasonable $300. with reductions for multiple workshops. Whether a beginner or a seasoned artists, you would benefit from his teachings. 

Aren't you just itching to come to Maine? August is a lovely month. Think about it. You could begin with a 3-day Hatfield energy boost and continue on to a beautiful coastline town for an extended stay and paint, armed with precious fundamentals and a new-found confidence. 

Does it get any better than that?...!

(Note: I can't get this photo adjusted to look as soft and delicate as the actual painting.)


  1. Lovely painting Susan--I clicked on it to see it better. I find getting good photos of the larger paintings is tricky. That's exciting about Don. I won't have thought he could get away.

  2. These are gorgeous wildflowers! I wish I could come to the workshop and I've always wanted to see Maine. Unfortunately, no vacation time for me until after October 9th.

  3. Yes he does like Luka. He borrowed my car and when he returned asked who that was on the CD. Said he really enjoyed listening to him...

    But Kevin, don't let that stop you from taking his workshop. Last time we didn't have music playing.

  4. Beautiful and exquisite treatment

  5. I just cannot imagine saying that I'm "solid" in the fundamentals. Even after 20 years! Maybe some day....(sigh)....

  6. "Nature's Dance" is definitely solid in the fundamentals!


  7. And the longer I know you the longer you amaze me keep up the good work.

  8. Thank you for sharing about Don. His workshops sound really helpful. Maine is pretty far away for me to travel... but maybe someday!

    I LOVE this painting, BTW. The wide format and linear composition give lots of interest, and your brushwork is so luscious.

    Thanks for sharing.

  9. Je suis heureuse de revoir sur ton blog cette magnifique glissière fleurie... Un très joli travail...
    Je ne connais pas particulièrement Don. Je lui ai seulement parlé au téléphone et nous avons eu une simple conversation aux déclinaisons amicales. Sa voix et son rire sont la preuve d'une grande générosité qui doit forcément se ressentir dans son enseignement.
    Gros bisous à toi ma chérie. Tu me manques en ce moment...

  10. I love the painting! Wish I lived closer:) My daughter and I tried doing a painting on a canvas when she visited last week. It was so much fun even though I will never show anyone my results!LOL

  11. Wow! So totally gorgeous - color, design, brushwork - everything!


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