I made a sweet discovery this past October related to my teaching work.
Turns out, serious interested folks don’t have to wait to take one of my spring workshops to learn the “Matt Brown approach” to hanga printmaking. There is another option (subject to factors that would be unique to each individual, to our mutual schedules). The basic idea? . . . that I can teach at other times of year, one-on-one, and qualified students can do a study in my shop alongside the normal day-to-day work that goes on in that building.
To be honest, Claire Emery did not come all the way from Montana where she lives to do a 3-day study with me in the middle of October. She was set up down in Great Barrington, MA for a time, so it was maybe 3 1/2 hours for her to get here . . .
Claire is a printmaker in her own right, it is her main work and income. You can see her work at www.emeryart.com.
I think she found out about me through her parents, who found me and my work at a show in Manchester, VT in 2010 or 2011. She shared with me that she has one or two of my prints, so perhaps having that (or those) on her wall kept an idea alive for . . . I think she had contacted me asking about taking one of my workshops at least a year prior to arriving here.
The long and short of the e-mail exchange was that Montana seemed too far to travel to take a 3-day class (though some have certainly traveled farther: this past June Joseph came all the way from Holland to take the class, and talks of coming back next June) or perhaps the dates just didn’t work out. Whatever the reason, Claire inquired of the idea of doing a one-on-one study at a time that might work. I encouraged her to seek me out at a show, we talked, you might even say we did an “interview”.
The study time went great. Claire got a good grasp of the hanga approach, and in parting we agreed it seemed likely the nature of her work would likely change . . . another printmaker converted from oil to water?! I think perhaps not entirely, but certainly she now can move past hand-coloring to multiple block work, and has the tools to more closely adapt her wonderful watercolor and drawing work to her printmaking.
Claire shared the following note about the workshop and agreed I could make her words public:
Spending these days in discourse and work has restored my soul and for this I am thankful. The world you have created here feels strangely like home to me. I have enjoyed and taken in so many layers of it. your teaching was patient and thorough and your heart was kind. I can spring into new ways of working and perceiving from here.
Be well, Claire”
So if reading this post gives you an idea . . . give me a call (603-795-4619). We could perhaps arrange an interview, and then, who knows, you might be set up in the shop here in Lyme learning the whole business sooner than you might think!