Montreal workshop photosPosted: June 30, 2019
Even though I’ve been fortunate enough to travel to so many exotic places to teach, I’ve always been reluctant to give workshops in my own city. When people ask why, my answer is always that the weather in Montreal, even in summer, can be unpredictable and I don’t want to be caught out on the street with fifteen students and no place to take shelter. That’s one of the drawbacks of teaching on-location sketching. It’s fine if you are sketching on your own — you can always duck into a café and finish your sketch in there. But if people have committed a workshop for a whole day or two, a sudden downpour can ruin the experience for everyone.
This year I decided to take the leap (and keep my fingers crossed for good weather) by giving a couple of two-day workshops. I’m an optimist, after all. One of the groups met me last week for one day in Carré St. Louis and another one in Vieux Montréal. We were lucky. The rain held off on both days, although in the evenings there were huge downpours.
We crammed a lot in during the two days. We worked on values, colour, composition, limited palettes and vignettes. Basically the same stuff I teach in a longer session, but crammed into two days. My demo on the first afternoon was of the kiosk in Carré St. Louis. One of my favourite spots in the city.
Montreal is so beautiful in the summer, and it was a real pleasure to take advantage of the city’s historic locations.
We painted in Vieux Montréal as well, facing City Hall (which is now being renovated). I thought that would be a great backdrop for a group photo of this talented bunch.
Although no one ventured in there, we were right next to the historic garden in back of Chateau Ramezay. There’s a shaded bench in the corner of that garden that’s one of my favourite spots for sketching.
And although we didn’t sketch it, I had to take a photo of the fountain in Carré St. Louis, because on a sunny day, it’s a stunning sight.