Monday 27 October 2014

Dina Wakley class

Gosh, where do I start with my class at AFTH. Excited, nervous, so looking forward to meeting Dina.
Must try not to waffle.
Lots of very colourful characters were there and I was glad that I had chosen my Joseph's amazing technicoloured dream dress to wear as I felt part of the clan.(stupid but important to me)

Dina started by asking us to draw our before pic of a face. This was good to compare at the end.
Next she demonstrated correct proportions of face and effects of eyes, mouth etc and how she portrays them. We all tried this.
Next, using her guidelines we all drew the person next to us. This was on top of page gesso'd and scraped with paint and stencilled. We drew with our Stabilo pencil which reacts to water. We washed over some of the lines with water. Mine was not bad but Dina noticed that the eyes were too big.

Dina emphasised over and over that in order to sketch faces we must practise and practise and use reference….photos from mags etc.

Next challenge, should we choose to accept it, she said, was to draw from a pic we had brought and paint it.
We prepped a background with scraped paint, stencils etc. Drew our pic and then
1. dry brushed all the shadowed parts in umber.
2. overlapped this 90% with another colour, e.g. turquoise.
3. overlaid the face with another colour by crosshatch brushstrokes.. never any water, just wipe brush on apron and carry on.
4. Highlight  areas in white.
Paint up to black lines, not over them.
5. whiten the pupil and paint mouth.
6. redraw lines with stabile pencil
7. Add more colour for fun and crayon too.
this is my result. I was well pleased with this.
Here are examples of Dina's work…awesome.

Next project was to build up a series of faces on one piece of work. Obviously, this is Dina's.

Mine! based on Marilyn Monroe. Not the best! but fast and frantic to be fair!

Next project, draw with non-dominant hand! liked this cos good excuse to fail! This is Dina's.

And mine!

Next project, after prepping background, colour block a face shape and then draw on it with a stick dipped in ink!
Mine was rubbish as I forgot to consider proportion as was losing the plot by this stage!
ANYWAY….we went on to draw a face using a top from Dylusion inks dipped in ink….Dina's
 version, she used a great big fat top for hers. Amazing!

My version…not bad!

I took quite a few of our wonderful tutor and here she is!

And here is a very cream crackered but happy me just before we did show and tell!

So, a very worthwhile and extremely rewarding course. fired me up to have a go and free up to use colour and bigger brushes. practise is the key and use references. 
Had another go today and am pleased to be carrying on the skills that the wonderful Dina taught me! Much respect!

My style is not that of Dina but her aim is to stimulate, not to clone!


  1. Your drawings are fabulous - following on our twitter chat I definitely think this course is best suited to someone with some degree of talent before you go!! Love the results, and some great photos of you and Dina. Glad you enjoyed it - but no wonder you were so tired when you got home! thanks for sharing.

  2. WOW what a brilliant post Hazel and great to see all the stages you went through. Glad you had a great time and learnt loads of new stuff to try and by your effort from today it's certainly progressing in the right direction xxxx

  3. Wow brilliant post Hazel and brilliant paintings!! sound like you thoroughly enjoyed yourself xxxx

  4. Wonderful writeup, hazel. I think you are very talented,

    Lucy x

  5. Absolutely brilliantly done Hazel! I'm so glad you enjoyed it and you achieved some fab results and have my total admiration for doing this class. I have to admit I would have been terrified and would have hated it, lol! The second you said you had to draw the person next to you that would have been me out the door and I would have been useless with my left hand......can barely hold a pencil with it let alone control it! Well done you, I am in awe!

    Lesley Xx

  6. Fab work. A workshop with dina...I am very jealous!

  7. Oh Wow Hazel love all your faces they look amazing. This is such an interesting post that is informative and inspirational. Love all your pics. I am soooo envious. Thank you for sharing what seemed an amazing day xxx

  8. Fantastic recent piece Hazel.......

  9. Dina's a great teacher, I took a class with her a couple of years ago.
    Your faces are all super Hazel, bet you had fun!
    Alison xxx

  10. I am seriously impressed with your drawings & am more than a little green with envy. I'd love to do a class like this, but I'm so rubbish at drawing anything it would be completely wasted on me. So pleased you enjoyed the day & I hope you're feeling a little less exhausted now. :)

  11. What stunning work from the day's learning, Hazel. I can see that what Dina inspired has continued to ferment and grow since the workshop - but what you created that day is already seriously impressive. Wow, wow, and another wow for your beautiful drawings/paintings/creations.
    Alison xx