oil portrait of woman by Rita RomeroThis year I decided to use my vacation to further my painting skills.  I had the great pleasure of participating in Thomas Nash’s Color and Portrait Painting workshops held in the Bobbi Baldwin Art Studio. It was a great opportunity to study with a top award-winning portrait artist who is a “living master”.  Tom has painted distinguished people such as Sen. Zell Miller, Leonard Bernstein, and Newt Gingrich.

 I can’t express how invaluable these workshops were or what a fantastic teacher Tom is. I was most impressed by his openness and willingness to share the knowledge he has gathered over his 40 year career. He showed slideshows and gave us handouts for our reference. He was always amiable, willing to answer questions, and took time to work with each student, even when he was tired.

Being a colorist, Tom’s color workshop covered basic color theory, with lots of mixing information and painting exercises.  This class definitely opened my eyes to the possibilities and process of using different colors than I am used to.  My paintings will never be the same again.

 The first evening of the portrait painting workshop, Tom gave a portrait painting demo. He got a late start, and it was well past midnight when the painting was done. Those of us that stayed to the end, wouldn’t have missed it.

Above is the portrait sketch I painted of the lovely K.C., one of two models our group worked from. How do you think it came out? It was a different approach for me, and I had a hard time working with Tom’s methods at first. Plus, being in someone else’s studio and being on a tight time schedule was daunting. Still, it helped to push me beyond my comfort zone to a higher level of painting skill. That was a learning experience I will always treasure!!

 If you are interested in improving your painting, don’t miss one of his workshops. You can check his website at: http://www.thomasnash.com.