If someone would have told me a couple of years ago that I would get to study with both Quang Ho and Scott Christensen in one year, I would have told them they were crazy! However, I was fortunate to take a workshop with Quang in Nashville this past fall. Organized by my mentor, the fabulous Lori Putnam, it was an experience I will never forget for several reasons. First and foremost, Quang Ho is a Master. He is not only a Master painter, but in my opinion (and I am VERY picky about teaching because of my teaching background), he is a Master teacher. He is not only encouraging to everyone, no matter what their current level of painting is, but he is so sharing and giving of what he has learned and is learning about art and painting and even life in general. His excitement during the entire workshop was so endearing and you really just wanted to put him in your pocket and take him home with you by the end of the workshop (someone said this and I just had to repeat it)! Lots of teachers are nice, so the word nice is such a cliche word for me to use to describe him, but he is just so darn NICE! There. I said it anyway. He is nice and puts you at ease when talking, visiting, and painting with him.
But let me talk about the workshop. One of the other reasons I really enjoyed this workshop was because it had some of my favorite painters in the workshop along with me! Some of my friends and teachers that I have had for workshops before were learning to stretch themselves and try new things in Quang’s workshop. A little intimidating at first, maybe, but so fun to see so many good painters and paint along with them.
Quang’s focus on this workshop was plein air painting, and the weather was just perfect for us in the Nashville area. We painted at some great locations around Nashville and really enjoyed true fall weather in the South. Quang spent time doing demos to illustrate ways that we as artists need to learn to say “what if?” What if I try this, or what if I try that? As artists, Quang encouraged us to have “no fear, no ego” when it comes to painting. I need to paint that on my forehead or at least on my painting palette so I can see it when I get stuck on something or am afraid of “messing up” a painting. It was freeing to have him encourage us to try things and I really came out of that workshop with a new outlook on things. I have included some of my favorite pictures from the workshop along with this post for your viewing pleasure.
If you are not familiar with him, I would encourage you to get his “Nuts and Bolts” DVD. It is well worth it and he talks about some approaches to paintings that are an invaluable part of my painting process today. As I have said before about other teachers, if you ever get the chance to study with him, take it! You won’t be sorry!