A thrilling experience to teach at the famous Munnings Museum, near Colchester.  This beautiful house was the home of Sir Alfred Munnings (1878-1959) for much of his life, and when he purchased the house he actually physically transported the large studio by cart from his previous home in Norfolk.  This studio stands in the grounds and is open to visitors, so I could see his actual easels, his plaster anatomical casts of horses and horses’ legs, and his painting kit just as he left it (very clean brushes I noticed) at his death in 1959.

In the house hang many of his most famous paintings and absorbing examples of his energy and his extraordinary skill and ability in painting horses.  As a young man he bought and sold horses as models constantly, learning all the time how to show their form and the colours in their coats as well as their wonderful energy.  He had a wonderful and successful career which enabled him to live in some style.  He also had a house and studio in Chelsea, London, and his wife owned a cottage in Exmoor.

It was fascinating to see his work close up and study how he applied the paint, and most of all, the careful preparation of drawings and sketches before he made the final paintings, which lost nothing of the initial energy and inspiration.

My own class was for drawing only, and we worked energetically through the stages of mark making and proportional principles to memory and personal expression.  The following two days were a chance for the East Anglian painting group to work from real models, including Suffolk Punches and two driving ponies.  Their handlers were dressed for the part in Edwardian outfits.

April to July 2020 I constructed an on-line course “The Art of Drawing Horses” through a Canadian platform called coursecraft.

It was a big learning curve, first to get familiar with the platform layout, and secondly to become confident with using video.  There were more than a few stumbling blocks along the way, as I discovered that my local broadband speed was much too slow to transmit videos!  Many youtube videos later and with the help of a video artist in Edinburgh, and the postal service (yes I had to resort to pen drives to send him my videos) it was completed.  Now I am on superfast broadband, courtesy BT.

I launched it in July and it was an instant success.  I had no idea what the reception would be and how it would work out in practice.  Would I be overwhelmed, and how would I communicate with the participants? Would it make sense to them? One of the main advantages of creating this course was that I had had to dig deep to understand my own process.  I worked through it all , making set after set of drawings, and filming myself. I learned so much about how to combine my energetic and expressive way of drawing with analysis, and then planning to create and select a theme or focus.

Now, nearly 3 months later, I curretly have 28 participants, some of whom have completed the course and sent me their inspirational drawings.   Others connect through the comments sections of the modules or via the group facebook page.  We are about to create a zoom group.

Below you can see something of the materials we used and the stages we go through from free mark making to careful assessment of proportional rules to combining expression and knowledge and drawing from memory to finding a theme.  My next e course is “Drawing the Horse’s Head” available later in 2020.

 

 

Drawing Horses workshop with Diana Hand Charcoal drawing by student

I had a great day on Saturday with the group of dedicated and enthusiastic students at the Drawing Horses workshop.  We began by using charcoal very freely,  and everyone, including some people who had never felt comfortable with or even tried drawing, did some splendid work.  I then did a short demo explaining the principles behind my book “Draw Horses in 15 Minutes” and the rest of day was spent building on these two approaches.  I am looking forward to more classes next year.  Watch this website for further information over the winter.

 

Drawing Horses Workshop with Diana HandDrawing Horses Workshop with Diana HandDrawing Horses Workshop with Diana HandDrawing Horses Workshop with Diana HandDrawing Horses workshop with Diana Hand Charcoal drawing by studentDrawing Horses workshop with Diana HandDrawing Horses workshop with Diana Hand Charcoal drawing by student

 

Watercolour sketch of horse

 

i shall be holding a day-long workshop on 29th July in St Andrews Church Hall, Leny Road, Callander, FK17 8AL  from 10 am to 4 pm.  The cost is £30, including basic materials.

The subject will be horses, drawing horses, in whatever form you like.  I will demonstrate my approach and then it is up to you to create your own interpretation, as freely or precisely as you wish.  I will guide you through the basics of proportion and anatomy and drawing materials and paper will be supplied.  Please bring along any images or additional favourite materials.

I look forward to seeing you and sharing my love of horses.

Thank you to everyone who came along and worked so hard.  We had SUCH a good day.

Here are some details from student drawings, experimenting with different media

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Stallion charcoal and wash on paper MUG

Silk scarf square with stallion horse design

I shall be holding a teaching workshop at the Kirk Hall, Callander on 22nd July, 2017.  The day will run from 10am to 4pm, with a break for lunch.  Simple materials will be provided and I will be focusing on a free and expressive approach to drawing horses, partly based on the techniques presented in my book “Draw Horses in 15 Minutes”.  Maximum number of participants is 10, and the cost for the day is £30 per person.  I look forward to seeing you and sharing our love of the horse!  Please contact me for further information on info@dianahand.com

This event is part of Callander Summerfest.