Painting in the great outdoorS
A FEW THOUGHTS FROM WOODY:
Contrary to popular and even professional opinions, I believe one must not necessarily be a great draftsman to become a competent painter. I suggest drawing and painting can be thought of as two similar but, different skills. There is an important reason for this.
The ability to draw a straight line has more to do with fine Craft than Fine Art. Unfortunately, many people are intimidated by what they feel is an inability to draw that straight, but expressionless line. Sadly, they erroneously conclude they lack any art talent and, frustrated they give up too soon. Blinded by the quest for the photographic ideal, they fail to see or appreciate the beauty of their own personal mark, their special gift that makes them unique.
I think it fair to note that the road to becoming an artist takes a long time, combined with a healthy ego, an open mind, hard work, thick skin, and perseverance. The journey may take many paths including, but not limited to academic training as well as the many forms of self guided education, by way of books, DVD’s, workshops, private classes, etc.
I share artist Frank Webb’s opinion that art is better appreciated than judged. Furthermore, it s helpful to remember that the seduction of marketing, promotion, commercial acceptance, awards, peer evaluation, and sales are not the only indicators of one's worth as an artist. We might find comfort in the words of Mary Corita Kent who noted, “There is no mistake. No right, no wrong, only make.”
ABOUT WOODY HANSEN …
Internationally recognized artist Woody Hansen, has had a close relationship with watercolor painting for over fifty-five years. He is the recipient of numerous awards; including the Gold Medal at the 1974 California State Fair, and the prestigious Bank of America award at the DeYoung Museum, San Francisco. He has taught watercolor classes and workshops, juried art exhibitions and demonstrated his watercolor technique for many organizations. His work is in private and corporate collections nationally, and internationally as well.
Hansen likes combining outdoor work, with the more controlled studio environment . Over the years his subject matter is varied. However, raised in the city of Mount Shasta, and now living within a few miles of Sacramento's American River Parkway, Hansen prefers the outdoors; even much of his non-objective work originates, whenever possible among rocks, trees, sand, and water.
His formal education is in art, including the University of California college of Environmental Design (Architecture), Berkeley, and California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland, where he studied watercolor painting with George Post, and Louis Miljarak.
Hansen's early professional art career began when he started painting window signs at thirteen years of age. By the time he was in high school, he started a commercial sign business. Concurrently, he initiated a broadcasting career at the local radio station, KWSD, as a weekend announcer/disc jockey and the host of a Top Ten show.
After college he became employed at KKIS in Pittsburg, California, as a radio personality, and eventually the station’s program director until being drafted into the Army. Following basic training he was assigned to Ft. Lewis, Washington. It was there that at the request of the company commander, he successfully completed a variety of art projects.
Hansen also served as a broadcaster for the Ft. Lewis Public Information Office. During off duty hours, he landed employment at KMO radio, Tacoma, as an evening disc jockey until finishing his military service with a thirteen month tour of duty in Korea.
Soon after discharge from the army, Hansen found work at KSRO, in art friendly Santa rosa, California, where he eventually became that station’s Program Director. Five years later he accepted a similar position with KCRA, in Sacramento. All this time, Hansen’s interest and practice of art never waned. He was continually exhibiting and selling his work since his release from the Army.
In 1970, with their daughter approaching her sixth birthday, Hansen and his wife decided this would be the best time to leave broadcasting and concentrate on a full time art career. However, it wasn’t long before he realized if he was to maintain his artistic freedom, it would be necessary to supplement his income.
Fortunately, during a period of voluntary association with the American Red Cross and the National Ski Patrol System, an opportunity to teach First Aid and CPR resulted in a successful, part time business venture. Eventually, his teaching experience led to contract work for the State of California, and the Sacramento Parks and Recreation Aquatics Department. This opportunity would, in time provide the second chance at a much anticipated full time art career.
In 2008, NMO, a form of Multiple Sclerosis that attacks the optic nerve, left Hansen legally blind. Nevertheless, he continues to work full time bringing his unique painting style and knowledge to various public and private venues.
Hansen’s early interest in watercolor revolved around the works of famous painters and illustrators and most notably, the innovative paintings of the California School of Watercolor. He is a shape painter, who creates bold, interesting, calligraphic marks on paper, resulting in direct, expressive, abstract or non-objective works of art. His unique approach has been described as strong, yet deceptively simple.
Hansen has earned respect as a gifted watercolor teacher. He shares his expertise by way of the Internet, social media, lectures, demonstrations, classes, workshops, and juror of art exhibitions. He enjoys helping others to understand and avoid the watercolor contradictions and half-truths he has encountered during his long career as an artist.
Hansen’s web site, woodyhansen.com, offers hundreds of watercolor paintings which are featured in eight Main Galleries, six Annex Galleries, and ten Student Galleries. His blog, Woody’s Blog highlights comments on the process used in creating many of his paintings.
He is a former member of the Santa Rosa Art Guild, the Marin Society of Artists, the West Coast Watercolor Society, as well as local, and regional art groups. He is active on Facebook, and Twitter.
Woody Hansen has a home and studio/gallery in Sacramento, California, where he lives with his wife Marlene and their German Shepard/Rottweiler rescue dog, Connor
Www.woodyhansen.com | www.woodyhansen.com