Each August brings the annual summer course, an opportunity for experienced painters to explore and study the figure over a five-day life pose. Each year we meet in the beautiful surroundings of Caterham School, in its light and airy art studios.
This year the format changed as the previous taught summer school developed into an untutored workshop enabling a very small number of figurative painters who are inspired by and serious in their work from the human form to work from the model. I worked alongside the others on my ‘bather’ painting throughout the week.
During the week, each painter is asked to bring in images of paintings of other artists to demonstrate who inspires them, who are they currently studying, or looking at in relation to the painting they are currently working on. The brief is to bring in an image of a painting which makes you want to go straight into the studio and begin painting. This is always an interesting exercise, seeing the wide range of artists that excite us. Our inspirations during this week ranged from Cezanne, Rothko, Hammershoi, and Uglow, … to Rodrigo Moynihan, Grayson Perry and Roman Mummy Portraits. Quite an eclectic mix!
At times greatly frustrating, yet I’m sure everyone would agree that it was a very rewarding few days work, and good progress was made during the week observing how paintings progressed stage by stage. Each day ended with a lively ‘crit’, a discussion and feedback session looking at each artists work in turn.
Thanks to everyone, especially our wonderful model for making it such a great week.