Acrylics

One of my favorite parts of my job is that I get to paint on the clock. Today, I went on a little voyage to do it, to a town called Mooringsport in the northwest tip of Caddo Parish, about 30 miles from Shreveport. I’d seen the exterior of this library, but I’d never been in. It looks and smells like an old schoolhouse.

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I went up there because a local artist, Eric Francis, is doing a series of painting programs for the library based on Jesmyn Ward’s novel, Sing, Unburied, Sing, this year’s One Book One Parish selection. Today, we painted the crow on the front cover. Unlike my painting programs, Eric starts with a very helpful pencil sketch, which is way less intimidating for first-time painters than an entirely blank canvas is.

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The turnout was amazing and far more than I was expecting. Everyone was enthusiastic and proud of their work. Some people made amaaaaaazing paintings.

I was super impressed by the whole program. Since the turnout was so high, I’m planning on bringing my art and tech programs for kids and teens. Too bad the branch is closed on Saturdays, or I’d schedule a Paint Studio program there.

Good times at the library!

Here’s another work project (so many excuses to paint!): my own version of Van Gogh’s Starry Night for a series of children’s programs I’ll be doing in February! The idea came from a lesson plan by Misty Poe. The sky is painted with acrylics. The mountains, town, and willow tree are all construction paper painted with nupastels. I used spray sealant on the construction paper, then modpodged the whole shebang together.

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It turned out super cute! Of course I couldn’t help myself and made mine more complicated than Poe’s example. I might end up making a much simpler one before the actual program.

It sucks that due to the cheap construction paper I used, this one probably won’t last very long, though until then I think I’ll frame it and hang it in my office.

Aaaaand here’s today’s painting! I actually did this at work today. Every month, I teach a painting class at a library branch, and this one’s for October 20th. It’s not my first go-round with this one. I painted this last October, and it was probably my third or fourth painting ever. Here it is:

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I like the first one better. I used the brushes patrons will use in my class, and I had major problems with them. For the program itself, I’ll be sure to bring my own.

They’re based on this tutorial by one of my very favorite people, Cinnamon Cooney, the Art Sherpa. In fact, all of the programs I’ve done so far are based on her tutorials. She has a Labs program that I should be a member of to teach her tutorials, but I haven’t been able to join. Non-profits and not-for-profits, which includes public libraries, can get a free membership by emailing them. I’ve sent three emails and gotten zero responses. I’ll try again soon because I want to be legit.

Here are a few photos from my programs. This one’s from September. I’m terrible at remembering to take pictures. I took this one after a couple of people had finished and left.

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These are from August. Everyone always seems to have a good time.

And, finally, here are a couple from my first program. Some of these people might look familiar: a few of them keep a close eye on the library’s Facebook page to be sure they get one of the very limited (free) tickets.

I’m so glad I get to do these programs. I have them booked through January so far, and they’ll continue through next year at various branches. I’ll also be doing some kids’ and teen art programs soon. It’s gonna be awesome!