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JOIN ME FOR A FUN DAY OF WORKING IN ACRYLICS AND LEARNING ABOUT GELS, MEDIUMS AND GROUNDS. EVEN IF YOU PAINT IN OILS, YOU WILL LEARN FROM THIS. 

“Hydrangea Love” by Rachael McCampbell, acrylic on board

Adults Only

Saturday, November 18, 2017
9:00am – 4:00pm

Cost: $100 per person (please bring your own lunch)

Golden Acrylics Certified teacher, Rachael McCampbell, will share the latest acrylic techniques and applications when painting a still-life for the day. The focus will be on composition, color mixing, painting techniques and learning new skills with acrylic paints. A still-life arrangement will be setup to paint or you can bring a photo of your own arrangement to paint. 

Supplies included in class: charcoal, water containers, table easels and some brushes. 

Students must bring: acrylic paint, canvas or panels to paint on, palettes and their favorite brushes and utensils. More details to follow once you’ve registered. 

REGISTER HERE THROUGH OWL’S HILL

Note: this article was published in the July, 2017 issue of Nashville Arts Magazine. 

Traditionally, illustrations are meant to tell a story through art, whereas fine art is personal work created for the artist’s satisfaction. Illustrators are hired to create art, while fine artists paint “on spec,” unless they are commissioned. Michelangelo illustrated nine major biblical scenes from the book of Genesis for the Sistine Chapel, and his client, Pope Julius II, paid him to design and paint it. Does that make Michelangelo an illustrator?

Norman Rockwell, the famous illustrator who created hundreds of magazine covers in his lifetime, was hired to paint, like Michelangelo, but because his art was used to sell magazines, he is considered to be an illustrator. If his famous Saturday Evening Post cover of the Thanksgiving dinner, entitled Freedom from Want, hung in a posh New York City art gallery, then it would have been considered fine art. But collectors snubbed Rockwell as a sentimental illustrator. He wasn’t in the same league with the avant-garde artists of his time such as Willem de Kooning, Pollock, and Rothko. Yet ironically, Rockwell’s Saying Grace (1951) sold at Sotheby’s in 2013 for $46 million. Does that sort of price tag elevate Rockwell to the fine art status?

Michelangelo: Expulsion from Paradise, Sistine Chapel, Rome, Italy.

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by Rachael McCampbell

(This article was published in the May 2017 issue of Nashville Arts Magazine)

 

I gave myself a great birthday present this year—a three-day workshop in cold wax mediumYou may not know what that is and that’s okay. The point is, I drove from Nashville, Tennessee, to Asheville, North Carolina, and gave myself the gift of being an art student again. I got to forget about my deadlines and worries and work with materials I was uncomfortable using. When I felt frustrated and perfectionist issues popped up, I gave myself the same advice I dole out to my students—Think of this as an experiment that you’ll throw in the trash. Don’t worry about the outcome; enjoy the process—much easier said than done.

These are some of the abstract oil paintings I created in Cindy’s workshop.

When you get paid for the art you make, it’s sometimes hard to extricate yourself from the outcome-centric pressure cooker professional artists simmer in. Once I convinced myself that this artwork was NOT a commission, nor would anyone even see it, I was freed up to play. My teacher, Cindy Walton, showed us how to use powdered charcoal, stencils, oil sticks, print rollers, and much more with cold wax medium mixed with Gamblin oil paints. It was exciting to experiment with these techniques, at times creating nothing but a mess —other times, the beginning of something new. Read more →

Reprinted from the March issue of Nashville Arts Magazine

March 2017

by Rachael Mccampbell

Rachael McCampbell is an artist, teacher, curator, and writer who resides in the small hamlet of Leiper’s Fork, Tennessee. For more about her, please visit www.rachaelmccampbell.com.

Pen and ink illustration by Rachael McCampbell, 5 x 7″, ink on paper

How many charity events have you attended where a surgeon has donated a hip replacement or a lawyer has donated fifteen hours of their expertise? I’ve never seen that. Most of the time you see artwork donated by artists, who, for the most part, make much less money than those in other professions. So, my question is, why do charities keep asking the lowest-paid freelancers with no health care, retirement plan, or benefits to donate their time and talents, and why do artists keep saying yes?

I have spoken with many artists on this topic, and it’s complicated to say the least. Some want to donate because they love the cause. Others believe they will get public exposure. Some feel that even if their $2,000 painting sells for only $100, it’s $100 more for the charity. Some artists refuse to donate at all because auctions are often not promoted or marketed correctly and their art sells for below market value, which ultimately hurts them, their dealers, their collectors, and the art market in general.

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Another creative adventure lies ahead this August and September to Italy.

The beautiful Villa we will be staying in.

I’m taking a group of 14 guests to Cortona, Italy this fall to an amazing villa on gorgeous grounds with olive groves, a swimming pool, fountains and more. We will experience the joys of painting plein-air, hand-making pasta, truffle hunting, antiquing, seeing ancient churches and masterpieces of art while traveling to beautiful spots like San Gimignano, Siena, Volterra, Arezzo and of course Cortona! 

 

 

The Trip has sold out but I am accepting wait list sign-ups. The date of the trip is Aug. 30 – September 9th. 10 nights. For more information, please email me at: rachael@rachaelmccampbell.com 

Rebecca Crowell, Swedish Red #1, 2015, Oil, mixed media on panel, 11” x 14”

A Way to Look at Abstract Art

Published in the January 2017 issue of Nashville Arts Magazine in my column “And So it Goes.”

by Rachael McCampbell

How many times have you walked past an abstract painting without stopping because you simply didn’t get it? Or, perhaps a judgmental voice crept in—A kindergartener could have painted that! When you pick up your paints and try this yourself, you will understand how difficult this sort of painting actually is. For me, the reduction process of stripping away representational imagery to express thoughts or feelings is a struggle. I equate the difference between representational and abstract art to country versus classical music. With country, you can connect to a story and music, but with classical, it’s only the music. Without words, how do you know what the composer is trying to express? Not withstanding research into the artist’s intentions, you simply take the music in on a visceral level and feel it. This is a good approach to abstract art as well—only later getting more analytical.

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I will be teaching classes at Owl’s Hill Nature Sanctuary in Brentwood, Tennessee in 2017. 

WORKSHOP: 

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I’m teaching a full-day still life workshop at Owl’s Hill Nature Sanctuary in Brentwood, TN, which will include lunch (vegetarian options.) We will spend the day from 9 – 4 getting as much done as we can on one painting of a scene, which I will arrange and light in the studio. This is a day to explore, experiment, play, paint, relax and have a mini-vacation from your life. Sign-up soon, as space is limited. Bring your own supplies, but acrylic paint and brushes are provided if needed. Beginners are welcome. $100

 

SERIES OF SIX CLASSES:

February 2 – March 9, 2017, I will be teaching a 6-week series of classes on landscape. Because of the cold weather, we will be working from photographs not outside. We will work on different aspects of landscapes, focusing on mood, color-mixing, creating distance, cloud-scapes etc. We will meet Thursday mornings from 9 – 12. Oil and acrylic. Bring your own supplies but acrylic paint and brushes are provided if needed. Beginners are welcome. $280

Owl’s Hill is a lovely. restful nature sanctuary with a gorgeous art studio filled with natural light. Students call my classes, “Art Therapy.” I’m NOT a trained art therapist, but I try to create a supportive environment for students to find their artistic voice through gentle instruction and inspiration. I believe that everyone can paint and has a unique way of expressing themselves.  Feed your soul and let your creative side get out and play!

January: Saturday January 21st, 9-4 pm lunch included $100 per person

February: Thursday mornings, 9-12, February 2nd – March 9th. Six consecutive classes. $280. Owl’s Hills supplies acrylic paint and brushes if needed. 

Sign up and pay through Owl’s Hill:

Saturday Workshop sign-up. 

February series of 6 classes sign-up.

Hope to see you there!!!!

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Painting by Margaret Cameron

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Painting by Leslie Satcher

TUSCANY: RACHAEL TAKES A GROUP OF NASHVILLE ARTISTS TO THE LAND OF LA DOLCE VITA

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Dining al fresco outside the villa one evening in Cortona, Italy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I remember a day in my 20s when I was standing on the outskirts of Cortona, eating a nocciola gelato, overlooking miles of vineyards and olive groves. As I took in the smell of garlic and tomatoes simmering on a nearby stove, a group of Italian women passed by, arm in arm, chattering in their native tongue, and I thought, I wish I could take this all with me. And I have, so to speak, but there is no replacement for actually experiencing Italy firsthand.

Like many art students, I completed a college summer abroad program in Cortona—a medieval hilltop town in Tuscany made famous by the book/film Under the Tuscan Sun. After graduating, I worked in Florence and have returned many times since. In September, I took twelve guests to a villa in Cortona for eight nights of what I called a “transformational journey.”

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by Rachael McCampbell

I wish I could have a dollar for every time someone has said to me, “I can’t draw or paint.” I’d be rich! I don’t believe there is any truth to this statement, because most anyone can apply paint to a surface, but what is true is that a great many people don’t have the patience to paint. I have witnessed it time and time again. It’s like the child who whines in the back of the car on a road trip, “Are we there yet?” With the constant checking of the clock and odometer, stress levels rise and the journey becomes unbearable—no one can focus on the joy of traveling. It’s the same with art. My students often want to be at the end of the process before they have even committed an hour to it. They toss their brushes down and state, “I’m not good at this—I give up.”

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Sketch with Charcoal for “Encroachment #3″, 36″ x 36” birch panel by Rachael McCampbell

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