Painting Class Review - Versailles, France

by Roman aka jar

"Mon embrayage patine?"

Was one sentence in french I heard way too often. 
It was Raffa's sentence of pride - and we had some hard days training to make his tongue speak the french language. 

It means somewhat like: "My clutch is slipping?" and is in fact completly useless, but we learned it from our little language book we got with us. Interesting? No, for sure not ... but I think that is just the right introduction in the review of the first english spoken beginners painting class we had in Versailles, France about one week ago. If I should describe the weekend from my point of view I could only find one word some others already used: brilliant!

If you are interested in reading a live report from John over at WAMP! - click here! 

Cheers to you, John!

First of all - before everything else I want to drop a massive "Thank you!!!" to Valerie and Francois. Valerie for keeping us guests for a little while and Francois for providing so much organisation quality to make the weekend as brilliant as it was.

Also I want to thank Felix, from PK-PRO who sponsored a lot of great stuff to the class and rescued me because I was not able to carry more stuff in the train. That one monster bag was enough! Thank you so much for your great products - as I have seen many have been used. 

Many thanks to everyone involved in the class and for sure my bibab, Raffa for his help and for making this weekend a brilliant experience for both of us. To be honest - yes - I was damned scared to speak in english as last time I tried while explaining something to some australian friends here at our place in germany it was like Chewbacca meets the Bee Gees from my pronouncations and vocal garbage noises. So, yes I was kind of respectful and scared about doing the class in english, but in the end it all went well thanks to everyones patience and help. Yes, I learned a lot. 

Many thanks to everyone for helping me out with the photos. I did not find the time to take many by my own, so I am really happy about your help.

There have been three things that made my heart heavy during the weekend. 

- The silence in the room during the early start of the class, this was truely scary.

- One participant got sick and she wasn't able to attend to the class for Saturday and Sunday - I am still waiting for your mail or I'll try to be at you soon ;)

- Third, there was one participant who had to leave earlier on Sunday and he was missing on the final day somehow :)

There have been way too many things that made me proud and happy during this weekend.

- I was happy to have participants from U.K., Sweden, Spain and France (the last one was pretty 
- My english wasn't too bad at all. Not as good as this guys tongue!
- My french improved - not too big steps, but hey! - My participants did awesome during the weekend, even two of them had to leave before the main    
  big painting time on Saturday night, gladly they returned on Sunday. I really enjoyed watching their 
  projects grow from nothing.
- Raffa and me felt that teaching the class in english was truely nice, as we had the feeling the  
  english language gives us way more options to be precise on the things we want to tell compared to  
  the german language.
- Thanks to all the participants for helping eachother in so many ways (camping, etc.)
- Silence was gone fast after the first minutes and the weekend become noisy wit much monkey 
  action ;)

"Genital Light?"

When it comes to the class content and on how the students transported the things shown and explained into her own ideas, personal project and inspiration I can only tell that it was a true joy to see so much creativity in one room.

We learned new tricks - for example, how to paint "genital light", explained by Raffa. How to prime a bush and what is needed to build up a plane from wood parts. The location where the class was held has been a very athmospheric hobby room which is shared by Francois figure club and some other guys who are building planes, small ones. Some Impressions:



We were also happy to find a winner of Frodo's sword from the Lord of the Rings. 

We thought about the rules on how you can win it and concluded that a competition about the Class figures won't be a good idea as this would have put too much pressure to the students and their figures they are studying on during the class with their different levels of experience. So we decided to use the video camera and the one who does the biggest monkey action will recieve the sword. Everyone who took part was so great but David made it finally with a very interesting report on wild apes and how they study bananas. Well done, Sir! We hope you did not recieve any trouble taking the sword to Isenga ... ahh U.K. :)



Many thanks for your patience on the last day. 
What I really got to learn is some kind of more precise time management but you know it can be hard sometimes when I see you working with joy and concentration to interrupt you. 

I was very happy about your feedback to the class and the good vibe we had during the whole weekend. Versailles and the area we have been was truely candy for the eyes and helped us all to regain energies during our breaks we made from the class. Thomas, thanks for the beer :)

For sure we did some photos of the participants results and of the whole class gang. Sadly were not able to take a photo of them all because of the "heavy heart points" ...

I hope everyone of you had a good trip home, whatever the distance was. It was our pleasure to have you as our quests and thank you for teaching us also a lot! Francois? You are awesome!!! Valerie? You are horsesome!! Thank you both so much!

 Keep on happy painting!
Best Wishes



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