Painting Class with Fernando Ruiz in Blumberg, Germany

by Massive Voodoo

Hey ladies and gentleman,

Peter has taken part in a painting class of Fernando Ruiz in the middle of June. It took him some time, but we are happy to present you his thoughts about the class:


Two weeks have already passed since I took part in the painting class of Fernando Ruiz from Heros & Villians in Blumberg. There was far too much on my to-do-list, so sorry for this late review. Thanks to Vlado and Phil for making the class possible.

For me the fun began already on Thursday. Phil and Kyle arrived in Stuttgart and we spend a nice evening together. I like having crazy people in my flat :-D

After our arrival on Friday afternoon, we had the honor to meet Fernando and it was quite impressing to have a look at a nice collection his painted miniatures. All the stuff I knew from P&P placed right before me... belive me, you could spend hours just by having a closer look at these busts. As a present for the class Fernado brought a Spanish ham with him and so we stayed in the kitchen chatting and waiting for the other attendants to arrive. The "little" snacks made sure we were still in best strength when the class began.

The workshop miniature worked on during the weekend was the Anglo-Norman-Crusader. In my personal opinion a very unusual and interesting bust. The larger areas were perfect for the class´ topic: learning how to paint big areas as easy as possible.

After cleaning and priming the bust, we kept our attention to the face for the whole evening. For me a quite unfamiliar start as I usually start with covering every area in basic colors to roughly visualise the later (hopefully!) harmony. But before we were allowed to start, everyone had to discuss his choice of colors for the crusader with Fernando. In his philosophy a good preparation and complete idea of the bust´s appearance is the most important factor. It helps having some kind of "red line" to follow later on. But this requires - especially for a historical miniature - research. By thinking about my color scheme I realized how much I have missed digging into historical topics.

Fernando´s way of painting is fascinating. He uses a retarder to prevent the colors from drying too fast. After applying them, he starts wetblending the areas in a way I usually do when I use oils. Interesting detail: he has only one brush for everything... By using the retarder he combines the advantages of oils and acylics. Nevertheless the technique takes its time to be mastered... to have no pressure and not forcing anything to a fixed deadline, we focussed only on one half of the face when we were doing the details.

Here a early WiP:

Friday evening went by and on Saturday Fernado kept us busy with painting the surcoat. While everybody was working he gave a lot of individual feedback and if necessary repeated the lesson in a  private coaching. Of course this way of teaching took its time and some of the more experienced painters had to wait a bit. But this gave us time to visit Mr. Spanish Ham again ;-)

 Here a WiP of Saturday evening (Kyle, Peter, Phil)

Time ran quickly and it was already Sunday. We kept working on the cloak and Fernando did a lot of painting sessions on different topics (how he combines different colors to get smooth results, how to paint different material, etc.).

All in all I would say the class has given me a lot of new inspiration. The technique with re retarder is interesting and I already use it in my daily painting. It´s quite easy and it´s fast. But I would recommend this class only to painters, which already have a basic understanding of contrast and color theory. The class had only a few "theoretical" parts, but the huge amount of individual coaching made a good balance.

So here are some pictures to give you more impressions of the class:


Here you will find additonal review on the class:

Mr Lee´s Painting Emporium: CLICK
DieVincis (German): CLICK



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