Wednesday, April 13, 2016

My Excellent Tennessee Adventure: Memphis to Chattanooga

What a whirlwind and fun trip - beginning with a visit to one of my very favorite humans, artist Jamie Lee McMahan, who hosted me for three fabulous days. I traveled to Memphis for a commission at the Memphis University School, where I'll be painting this year's distinguished scholar (you'll see more on that in future blog posts, as the painting proceeds).

Among the highlights were hanging around in Jamie's studio where we both found ways for each other to spend more $$$$ on art related toys, since evidently we still need newer and fancier "stuff" in our work lives. Jamie is an artist whom I'll be paintings as part of my American Artist series, so I had a chance to rephotograph him in his own environs.

Below, view from the sitter's chair, as Jamie showed me how he begins a portrait:)

On to Chattanooga Wednesday, for an evening demo preceding a four day workshop hosted by the Townsend Atelier, which is really a spectacular studio space. Peggy and Stan Townsend have created a beautifully designed and functional area, serving workshops and learning of all kinds, including a small but VERY select art supply shop, flexible lighting, space arrangements and best of all, their incredibly gracious presence as workshop hosts. I fell very honored to have been selected to be one of their instructors as the teaching roster is filled with artist who (IMO) are for the most part, superstars. For my artist readers, if you get the chance to attend the Townsend Atelier, you will have a wonderful experience. We had a great group of artists in attendance, all focused and hard-working.

Above, awaiting class arrival!
Below, Wednesday night demo in monochrome oil.

Below, with Chattanooga artists Jim Aplin, who dropped in to have lunch with Stan and me,  and Vrushali Dhond.

Below are some pictures of the Chattanooga Choo Choo Hotel, where I stayed. The history is so interesting, and the lobby is the original train terminal - cars and locomotives are on the grounds, and it is a very cool setting. While I couldn't recommend staying there, numerous good restaurants are nearby and the grounds are beautiful.

Here'a pic of the adjacent Stir Restaurant, which was excellent, and I thought had such an amazing bar- the bartenders scamper up and down the ladder, attached to the shelving on a rail, just like you'd see in old libraries.

The whole visit was capped off with lunch and a visit to artist Cindy Procious's studio - treat yourself to a visit to her website here. She is as warm and funny as she is talented - Cindy teaches regularly at the Townsend Atelier.

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