Saturday, May 7, 2011


Our guest artist/speaker for May was Ken Landon Buck, an internationally known artist who works in watercolor, gouache, pastel and acrylic. Ken has won numerous awards and is a signature member in the National Watercolor Society, the Kentucky Watercolor Society, the Southeastern Pastel Society and the Oregon Pastel Society, which has given him the Master Pastelist Award. He teaches classes at the Essex Studios in Cincinnati and in many of the Adult Community Education programs for the Art Academy of Cincinnati.

Ken gave a very information demonstration on using gouache on Wallis sanded paper. Wallis paper has a tooth that works well with pastel and gouache. Ken enjoys working with gouache because it gives him "more room to make errors and is very correctable." He can layer up to 60 layers of gouache on a painting or work with it very thinned with water and get a more transparent look. He always begins with his darkest value first so he knows where he's going with his painting values. He compared it to having a good road map when travelling so although you might veer off and take side trips along the way, you know how to get to your final destination. Ken worked from a drawing of a prairie dog, layering the gouache in steps, letting it dry in between layers. Even though the gouache dries, it still "sinks into the paper" at each stage so you have to have patience with it. Ken said he can spend hours working with gouache, adding layers and shaping forms like a sculptor.

First - a photo of Ken with the painting he brought in to show his work

Ken Landen Buck with one of his paintings of swimmers, for which is he well known.

Ken Landen Buck working on a prairie dog painting using only gouache (Grumbacher, Winsor Newton and DaVinci).

Submitted by Rhonda Carpenter.
Photos by Rhonda Carpenter and Susan Grogan.

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