This Sunday, four painters arrived at my studio to paint what I am dubbing 'the Eastlake Riviera' (float planes and all) from my windows.
Our subject: Interior with Landscape View. As we discovered, that simple and common human experience of looking outside from inside presents challenges and endlessly surprising compositional possibilities - which is probably why it has drawn the attention of artists from Vermeer to Bonnard, Matisse to Diebenkorn.
And now, us.
Our time-frame: five hours, with one of those, importantly, devoted to lunch. This was a deliciously successful potluck involving fresh greens and vegetable stew, corn chips with guacamole (which I made from five avocados hand-smuggled by my parents last weekend from the garden of friends in Carpenteria, California), goat cheeses and bread, and last but not least, chocolate-dipped strawberries and fresh cream sauce.
Post-lunch, a room full of strong drawings developed into painterly paintings that impressively incorporated lessons from some of the artists I mentioned, whose paintings we had looked at earlier. The resulting work was quite beautiful.
Thanks to all who came and especially to Diane for her impromptu suggestion to get together that started it all.
I think we have a new tradition. Look for upcoming sessions with a bit more lead time, open to anyone wishing to draw or paint, on my Julia's Studio blog. There is room for five people per session. Bring your painting bikini.
Diane Schebel at work on her painting
Julia iPhone photo