Greg Beecham is not being self-deprecating when he says that the artists he teaches grow because of what’s already inside of them, nor is he boasting when he notes that one person’s work rapidly improved after the artist attending one of Beecham’s workshops. The simple fact is that people gain knowledge when they are ready to gain knowledge. Beecham is serving it up to those ready to take it in.
“With just a little bit of added information, you can quickly move your art several levels up and just soar,” Beecham asserts. “It can happen in three days, but it all depends on the individual who is watching and learning.”
Beecham says there is some parallel to the Bible quote that there will be people ever learning but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth, but he feels that people generally find the change they need in order to make a breakthrough. Mostly, he helps them by talking about the tools of art, and how to use the tools to “bring about a unity resulting in simplicity and beauty.” He does this through a combination of lecture, demonstration, and critiques, with an emphasis on visuals—the logical approach for teaching visual people.
Beecham presents the tools of art as the following: color, value, texture, edges, drawing, and composition. And he defines beauty broadly, adding that sentimentality is not his idea of beauty. He encourages those who will be attending the SKB workshop in September to continue developing their drawing skills. “If you can’t draw you will forever be frustrated with your progress,” he says. “Work on your drawing. Worry less about how the paint is going to get on the surface.” Beecham also recommends that participants bring pieces they want critiqued by Beecham (and others).
The artist lives right in Dubois. And he’s been around. He sees that the SKB workshop is unique. “It’s a pretty special deal,” says Beecham. “You have people running the gamut from advanced amateurs to serious professionals who love coming to this. The networking is strong, there’s good information shared, and friendships developed. I don’t know where this kind of thing is happening anywhere else.”
“Plus, this is an incredibly beautiful area. Those who love plein air painting have the best of the best here where we live.” Ω