Figurative Design - Character Development: An Intuitive Approach to Faces & Figures

Nationally Known Artist: Jeannie McGuire
From: Pittsburgh, PA
Dates: Thursday, october 24 - Saturday, October 26, 2019
Time: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Members: $400 (Become a Member)

Non-members: $425

Medium: Watercolor on Paper
Level: Advanced Beginner - Advanced

Workshops with Jeannie McGuire will encourage and challenge artists to communicate a story or feeling in their paintings to create strong figurative works of art. Through demonstrations, candid conversation and individual time Jeannie shares her painting style and thoughts as well as the versatility of watercolor when employing a higher ratio of pigment to water. Referencing a variety of photographs and snap shots her workshops focus on; absorbing the viewer by developing emotion and movement; intertwining figurative subjects with their background; seeing natural design in reference materials; exploring the impact of cropping and the placement of contrast; and most importantly a purpose for creating art in your unique style. Jeannie hopes to inspire individual expression and encourage students to go beyond their current work level and aspire to create exhibition quality works.

About the Workshop

In Jeannie’s Figurative Design Watercolor Workshops she shares many aspects of her art through versatile projects and extended experimentation. As a student you are encouraged to be inspired by the instructors approach; to imagine a story, character and persona of the people in your reference photos; to find your own unique signature/style or improve upon your drawing and painting skills; discover the freedom of intuitive painting and go beyond illustration and create paintings worthy of exhibition. Students will explore the interplay between the figurative subject(s) and their backgrounds, natural design in reference materials, cropping impact, pigment maintenance, using a higher ratio of pigment to water, intentional and spontaneous marks, use of titanium white, and the freedom to change one’s mind. Each day begins with a demo pertaining to the days project such as; exploring eyes and faces in an unconventional way; focus on a single figure with an obscure background; and intertwine a group of people with their background elements. Artists receive plenty of personal attention and painting time.

To register

Limited spots available. Contact us by Wednesday, October 9 to reserve your spot! Call Latrobe Art Center at 724-537-7011 or click “Register for Workshop” below to register.

About Jeannie McGuire

Jeannie McGuire, a Pittsburgh-based artist, strives to invoke individual interpretation through her artwork, which impressively utilizes a free application of paint and stylistic forms of expression.  Situations and human character are communicated in such works as "Kenneth," the American Watercolor Society's 144th Gold Medal of Honor selection.  McGuire uses her own photography, acquired snapshots and life drawings to spark her creativity.  Her work has been described as a brilliant combination of emotion, movement, natural design, and sheer artistry that has been expanded upon from her days as a commercial graphic designer and photographer.  Impressionistic in nature with an identifiable subject, her strong, figurative approaches are unique in more ways than one.  As is the case, her works have been displayed and awarded on an International level including invitational exhibitions in the USA, China, France and Italy and a feature exhibition in the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art in Eugene Oregon, as well as represented in numerous art magazines.  McGuire further dedicates herself to her craft by instructing figurative design watercolor workshops in an effort to encourage fellow artists.  Professional organizations include the American Watercolor Society, Pittsburgh Watercolor Society and various small groups of collaborative artists.

Student Materials List

The following supplies are considered essential; a few are noted as very helpful.

  • Photo Reference: Students are to bring their own personal photography or other acquired photos and snap shots as painting reference. Include posed and un-posed faces, figures and groups of 2 or more. Look for emotion in eyes, gesture or movement in figures, interesting groupings and background elements. Include photos of people that you don’t know but if you do know them pretend that you don’t! Photos of adults may be preferred over children.

  • Paper: Cotton/100% rag artists’ watercolor paper such as 140 lb. Arches or other known brands. Single sheets of quality paper are preferred over watercolor blocks. Sheet size is your choice and can range from full to quarter in a rectangle or square format. A variety of paper surfaces such as hot press, cold press or rough are helpful.

  • Pigment & Palette: Watercolor pigments; If your palette contains only transparent and semi-transparent pigments please bring some semi-opaque and opaque pigments along. Choose pigment colors and brands that suite you. Include titanium white watercolor pigment. Use your normal palette or consider a large palette such as a Robert Wood as helpful. Squeeze fresh pigments into the wells or reconstitute the pigment already in your palette with water.

  • Brushes: Use your normal brushes if you are comfortable with the results or bring a few flat brushes to experiment with, your choice of brand. My FLAT brushes are – 1”, 1½” and 2” Robert Simmons SkyFlow Flat (white bristles).

  • Work surface: Your preference; a board slightly elevated about 6” on a tabletop or a floor easel.

  • Magnifying lens: Optional: A magnifier called a linen tester or a loupe, 1” 6X magnification, is very helpful to see detail in printed photos. Some artists have their photos on an iPad instead.

  • Please bring a painting or image of your work so I can see your style, very important.

Nationally Known Artist Workshops

Twice a year, Latrobe Art Center invites a Nationally Known Artist to travel to Latrobe for a three to five day workshop to teach a variety of techniques to local artists and art enthusiasts. Anywhere from 10 to 20 students fill the gallery for these workshops. Artists attending the workshops have traveled from Florida, Massachusetts, Maryland, New York, Ohio, and West Virginia. In addition, four students from Greater Latrobe Senior High School are chosen to attend the workshop under a generous scholarship.

Each year Latrobe Art Center strives to provide exciting and stimulating workshops taught by nationally known artists from across the United States. In the past we have hosted Frank Francese of Colorado, Janet Rogers of Florida, Margaret M. Martin of New York, Fred Graff of Ohio, Don Andrews, Jean Uhl Spicer, and Joyce Werwie Perry all of Pittsburgh, and many more! Latrobe Art Center is honored to have such prestigious artists share their wealth of information and experience with our local artists.

Please consider broadening your creative talents by attending one of our future workshops.