Someone once said: “a technique is an accident that you continue to recreate.” The act of art making is about showing the mind at work, and what a person is trying to say. This is the starting block for making anything: to learn something you don’t already know. – C. Steve Johnson
This summer, TCL is offering two Life Enrichment Courses taught by accomplished artist and poet C. Steve Johnson. The courses are “Drawing with Your Mind’s Eye” and “Poetry Writers Workshop.” Here, the instructor describes the courses in his own words:
Last night, I had a vivid dream. That I entered a room and I looked at a drawing on the wall and the lines, the images moved across the page in a fury of activity. It startled me. I wondered how a drawing could do that, and thought for some reason my mind was playing tricks on me.
Then I walked down the hall and looked at another drawing. Again, the images moved on the page. This time radiating out from the center. Still startled, I turned to look at a sculpture in the corner. It was a totem, part animal, part human, and the head turned, and the eyes followed me as I walked across the room. I forced myself to wake up, recognizing the significance of it. As shocking as it was, it has to do with the making of objects being about transference of energy. As if the artworks were conveying the residue of a sustained meditation.
This is much different than simply trying to make a pretty picture. It is also different from development of a craft or technique, which I admire greatly. It is more about showing the mind at work, and what a person is trying to say. This is the starting block for making anything: trying to learn something you don’t already know. You stumble upon a technique when arriving at what you need to say. Someone once said “a technique is an accident that you continue to recreate,” but it starts as something unexpected.
Drawing with Your Mind’s Eye
This is a studio drawing class for beginners to advanced artists. The focus of this course will be on drawing from ideas, more so than representational drawing. Using a variety of media from pencil, to sumi ink, to chalk, to charcoal, we will explore various techniques to express different subject matter from dreams, to timelines, to prayers and more. Students will learn to create visual metaphors for thoughts and ideas with an emphasis on composition. We will look at how contemporary artists continue to use drawing as a way to express current philosophical trends.
Poetry Writers Workshop
This course will encourage students to write by looking at a variety of contemporary poets and make connections with poets throughout the ages. We will look at how a poem means what it says, and explore hearing and reading the work out loud. Students will develop skills for critical thinking and deeper understanding for their own writing and the work of others. We will examine how poetry is as relevant in these times as ever before.
Meet your instructor:
C. Steve Johnson received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Kansas City Art Institute in 1993. His work has been exhibited internationally and is a part of many public and private collections. He is represented in New York City by the Andrew Edlin Gallery (http://www.edlingallery.com) with his artist collective The Fantastic Nobodies. He has worked with the Artist in Residence program in the Beaufort County Schools and has been The Enrichment Coordinator at E.C. Montessori for the last four years, implementing a range of programs from fine art and poetry to sustainable gardening and ecological sculpture. He is a member of Beaufort’s honorable writers group Otram Slabess. He is currently exhibiting some of his work at the renovated Piggly Wiggly and is working on new pieces for the Lowcountry Produce Market downtown Beaufort.
TCL Life Enrichment Courses with C. Steve Johnson
Seeing with Your Mind’s Eye
Poetry Writing Workshop
June 5 – June 26 OR July 17 – August 7
Beaufort Campus, 11am-1pm, Cost $79
For more info: http://www.tcl.edu/continuing-ed/life
TCL Registration ph: 843-525-8205
* All of the artwork seen here is by C. Steve Johnson