Tuesday, July 22, 2008

"Yesterday a pear, and today...this!"

One of the grumbles I overheard as my painting group gazed out over the town of St-Cirq Lapopie, stretched paper on our laps, paintbrushes in hand.
"Listen, you lot. You are in France. You can't spend your whole week painting in my barn." More grumbles, but my exhortations were rewarded with some noble attempts at capturing the tiled roofs, mottled stone walls, plummeting cliffs, and circling river below one of the loveliest villages in the country by twelve art teachers and librarians from Wisconsin and two from California. Pears, after all, can be found in any supermarket anywhere, but this scene is unique.

Jeanine Brennan, who organized this trip and another one last year, took the photograph of some of us perched among the hollyhocks above the town.

Contact me for information about organizing your own group for an accredited course of painting in France.

Sunday, July 20, 2008


I am taking part in a watercolour festival in St Yrieix, a small French country town two hours north of Rignac. I never really respond to the work of watercolourists per se, but I always find at least one fabulous artist at these events. David Norman caught my eye this year with this subtle and beautiful scene from Venice.


I have spent most of my life as an illustrator, so I am only now working to develop a personal style. I think it will have to do with saying the most possible, with the least possible line: of making every mark count. I have been looking at a wonderful book of sketches by the Japanese print maker, Hiroshige, and this drawing shows his influence on me.

Colour wheels and teapots

On Monday in the Foundation Watercolour Class, we concentrate on watercolour washes, colour wheels and watermelons, and the next day we move on to tone and form. Check out these fresh and lovely Morandi like studies by beginner watercolourists.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Student angst

Every night I have to shoo my current hardworking students out of the studio so I can get to bed by midnight. Li and Sheri are convinced that they are hopeless and aren't making any progress, so tonight I asked a friend with an upmarket gallery in Rocamadour to see if he could tell the difference between the still life studies by me and those by my students. In both cases, he was wrong! Which either means that I am a brilliant teacher or a lousy painter... (ps- the first pear and plate of apricots are mine.)

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Life drawing evening

Starting in August, I am organising an evening of drawing from a model every Monday from 7 to 10 pm in my barn studio in Rignac.

I am looking for fellow artists- anyone who is interested in drawing is welcome. The class will be uninstructed, though a review of work with coffee or wine after the class might be fun. I am asking for a contribution of 8 euros for the evening. Participants are requested to bring their own materials.

Please contact me via email, catherine@catherinestock.com, or telephone 05 65 33 69 40 for more information.

I am also looking for models- both nude and clothed. Please contact me to discuss payment.