Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Sumi-e Class with Master Yuming Zhu - Landscapes and Horses

The second day of class with Yuming Zhu began with landscapes. It is probably the most intimating subject for me because of all the elements you can paint. Mountains, trees, waterfalls just to name a few. Yuming supplied a bunch of landscape photos to use. For black ink, he used an inkstick and inkstone. You add a little water to the inkstone which has a well and you grind the inkstick around and around slowly in a circle until you have a little pool of ink. I had never done this before but I fell in love with the process and the feeling of making my own ink.  He told us that an inkstick should last 20 years and if we used ours all up, he would personally give us a new one, free of charge.
                                                 The landscape painting begun.

               After the demo, we returned to our spots and began our own landscape paintings.
Then it was time for the horse demo. He used a very large sheet of sumi-e paper and started by sketching the horse with charcoal.
Then he took his brush and started to paint. 
     Seriously, I could watch him paint all day long and I think my fellow classmates would agree.
                                      He signed the painting and then took out his chop to stamp the painting.
                                      Yuming Zhu explaining the power of sumi-e.
Now to my paintings. One of the hardest things for me is to know when to stop. Sumi-e is about leaving white space. This space is very important and it takes practice to learn when to stop.

And now my horse. I knew that I do not like to ride horses and I also discovered that I do not like to paint them. I had a photo to use as a reference and I struggled badly. Yuming came over and looked at my horse, turning his head side to side. He took awhile before he finally commented. He told me that I had painted an abstract horse like Picasso would have done and that some people would really like my interpretation. I think he was just being very kind. So take a good look at my first and last sumi-e horse. Oh and for the record, I was not trying to paint an abstract horse.

The class was two days lasting six hours each day. I must say I loved every minute of it. Yuming lives in the greater Seattle area and teaches there. He also travels across the country teaching. If you have the opportunity to take one of his classes, I highly recommend it. There were 14 of us in class and he continually walked around giving each of us individual help. I learned so much.

Here is a video of him in action:

1 comment:

  1. It is an honor to have you - a great artist in my workshop. Keep on creating.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...