Couldn't sleep last night despite being exhausted, too much excitement, nervousnes and anticipation perhaps. The villa is lovely, my housemates are excellent company and although Jason's personal mission seems to be to get us to eat every conceivable Italian dish possible we are managing some art between meals. I was lucky to get to sit next to Zhaoming at dinner last night and got the opportunity to talk to him about his working methods and philosophies as well as discussing a few contemporary artists and influences. Dinner was fab, bruschetta to die for, melon and prosciutto, wonderful pasta's as you would expect. I had chicken cacciatore and to their great surprise Zhaoming and his wife were both served the biggest steaks any of us had ever seen, even the people from the US.
Today we had the first demo, a local girl in costume. It was incredible watching the magic happening in front of our eyes and we were permitted to take photos as well as making notes. I took a lot of pics on my SLR but cant download them till I get home so took a few on the iPad for posting. The benefit of watching a live demo is you can clearly see what is painted accuratelysad seen and when artistic decisions have been made. As ever when watching expertise at work it looks easy but after lunch (proper Italian pizza) when we all did our own paintings I found myself being veering between my established practices and the new approach just demonstrated. It'll take a while to get into the swing i think and already I have concluded I need some new softer brushes.
I'll document the details of the notes later as I need to sleep now, but here are a few photos from Zhaomings demo. I forgot to take a photo of my painting, ha!