This year’s group were all - bar one – beginners, or at least painters who hadn’t picked up a brush for a very long time. In fact, one of them was being gently and imaginatively tipped back into art: her husband had bought the course for her as a surprise Christmas present (what a legend!).
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Susan Deas is a great 'de-bunker' of much of the seriousness and pomposity of musical appreciation. We went through pitch, rhythm, dynamics, melody, harmony, texture and form. Daunting? Not a bit of it. After years of never understanding musical structure, I started to appreciate the difference between major and minor, the role of different instruments, and even the real role of the conductor.
Malcolm’s style is hands-on: he takes a student’s work and adds a stroke – and suddenly a severe horizon is transformed into a living landscape.
Amy’s retreat explored the opportunities and met the challenges as she led the class through two daily practices that both extended and challenged, whilst also giving nurture and release.