Value, Value, Value: Intro to Scratchboard with Rhonda Nass
Saturday-Sunday, May 15-16, 2021 | 9am-4pm both days
$195/person + $15 materials fee. (Members save 10% on workshops!)
One of the most valuable skills to learn in creating artwork is the ability to produce, using limited materials, a wide range of light to dark. This workshop will focus on learning how to create that full white to black spectrum value range while scratching a black, ink-coated surface. We’ll use a sharp knife and vary the scratching strokes to give the appearance of differing grays. It’s a magical process and for those of you who work meticulously, or who are detail oriented, you will love this technique.
We’ll begin with a brief history of scratchboard, viewing various artists’ works, and review what makes a good design. Then by doing a value exercise, you’ll quickly grow to comfortably apply various strokes and proceed to begin your customized artwork using your chosen subject, your compositional design, and your chosen size. The idea is that these two days will give you the confidence to complete your drawing in your own space, at your own pace, at home.
There will be time for one-on-one demonstrations along with full group. Be prepared to luxuriate in an absorbing technique!
Class will include a break for lunch both days. Please bring something along or be prepared to purchase food. There is a grocery story within walking distance, but alas, the Blue Spoon Cafe is no more.
Supplies provided as part of the $15 materials fee:
- Scratchboard: two 6×6″ panels of black (already inked) Ampersand Clayboard Scratchboards
- Knife and blades: One xacto knife with three #11 blades
- Black pen: One #02 black micron pen for repairs
- Tracing/transfer paper: Two sheets of translucent vellum paper, plus one protective sheet to avoid hand oils on scratchboard
Supplies to bring with you:
- One graphite pencil (No. 2, HB, or F)
- Masking tape
- Piece of cotton or soft, non-textural fabric (can be ripped portion of old t-shirt, socks, etc. This will be used to wipe your knife blade)
- Hake/Wide, soft brush/feather, etc: Something soft to gently brush off blade cut residuals without scratching
- Patience, patience, patience
- MOST IMPORTANTLY: If you are a novice drawer, please bring your own close-up photographs of subject matter that interests you. By close-up I mean one flower bloom or two rocks for example, as opposed to a distanced full plant with several bloom clusters or a shoreline with added complexity. In the workshop we want to focus on learning the technique by focusing on our interpretation of a simple subject. If you are a veteran drawer, you have an additional option to bring in a “live” subject matter, such as a prop, for direct source material. Please no live plants or insects.
Our goal is to get the most experience scratching with blades on board in the two days to gain enough confidence to complete the piece you’ve begun in class on your own. To assess your experience, please bring 3-4 samples of your artwork to date. If you have no work, that is fine! You’ll soon have at least one! Relax and get inspired!
Here at River Arts, your safety is the most important thing for us. We plan to run studio classes, but with the following safety precautions added:
- A limit of 7 students in each class
- All students will work at their own 6ft table, maintaining social distancing
- Studio staff will clean and disinfect all surfaces at the end of each day.
- Latex-free rubber gloves, disposable masks, and hand sanitizer will be available to all students free of charge
- Face masks required for students and instructor
- We’ve also updated our cancellation policy
We plan to keep these measures in place for the foreseeable future, depending on where things are at. It’s very much a day-by-day process at this point. Thank you!