OFAI 2004: Workshops in the Visual Arts for Beginners and Workshops in Writing
October 14-17, 2004
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Beginning Approaches to Painting
Jack Bryan, Lawton, Oklahoma
Jack Bryan founded the Cameron University Department of Art in Lawton, Oklahoma in 1967 and retired from the chairmanship in 2000. During that time he taught courses in drawing, painting, ceramics, sculpture, art history, and arts in education. He has concentrated on landscape drawing and painting in oil, acrylic, ceramic glaze, pencil in enamel, and journal work involving sketching and poetry. His passion for painting and drawing is inspired from the Wichita Mountains. This workshop will feature creative methods of translating thoughts, images and concepts into paintings for the terrified, intimidated, or reluctant beginner. Participants will learn creative introductory methods of starting a painting. Classes will include concept development, journaling as a painting tool and the art of motivation through exploratory processes, attitude and instructional critiques.

Beginning Photography
Konrad Eek, Norman, Oklahoma
Konrad Eek currently owns and operates Maxwell Eek Design Studio in addition to teaching advanced photography at Oklahoma City Community College. His teaching experience also includes leading classes in photography and darkroom technique at the Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute, and the Beginning Photography workshop at the Oklahoma Fall Arts Institutes. Eek's work has been exhibited in numerous one-man and group shows, and his photographs appear in the permanent collection of the Fred Jones, Jr. Museum of Art at the University of Oklahoma, and in the Midwest Photography Archives. This workshop is an ideal opportunity for an absolute beginner to master the basics, or for a more experienced student to learn about the latest innovations in film, paper, and chemistry while reviewing the basics of exposure, metering, processing, and printing.

Beginning Drawing: The Sketchbook And Beyond
Mark Sisson, Stillwater, Oklahoma Arts Institute
Mark Sisson earned a Bachelor's degree in Fine Arts from the University of Michigan, as well as a Masters degree in Fine Arts from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where he worked as a temporary instructor. He currently teaches at Oklahoma State University. His works have been labeled as both "moralist' and "iconoclastic". Prints and drawings by Mark Sisson have been in approximately 200 juried and invitational national exhibitions where they have received over 50 awards. His works are in many public and private collections including the Bibliothéque Nationale, Paris, The Fogg Museum, Harvard University, The Nelson Atkins Museum, Kansas City and the Butler Museum of American Art, Youngstown, Ohio. This course will ask students to divide time between generating simple, expressive sketches and larger, more elaborate and more refined finished works. Employing simple strategies like sighting sticks, basic triangulation and grid work, students will be able to enlarge small preliminary and preparatory drawings into faithfully enlarged artistic statements.

The Poet as Magician
Andrea Hollander Budy, Mountain View, Arkansas
Why is it that the best poems are those that speak not only for the poet but for the reader as well? How do we create poems that will be important to other people, as much as they are to ourselves? In this workshop, participants will spend time uncovering magical tricks of master poets and applying them to their own work as they draft poems.

Andrea Hollander Budy is writer-in-residence at Lyon College, where she won the Lamar Williamson Prize for Excellence in Teaching. She is the author of five collections of poetry, most recently The Other Life and House Without a Dreamer, which won the Nicholas Roerich Poetry Prize. Among other awards, she is winner of a 2003 Pushcart Prize for Memoir, the 2002 Ellipsis Poetry Award, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Arkansas Arts Council, and the Bread Loaf, Wesleyan, and Taos Writers' Conferences. Recent work appears in The Georgia Review, Poetry, Shenandoah, Double-Take, Crazyhorse, FIELD, and Creative Nonfiction.

Sam McMichael, Apache, Oklahoma
Sam McMichael was reared on a small diversified farm southwest of Apache, Oklahoma. His grandfather and grandmother came to Oklahoma in the 1890’s. Stories of early Oklahoma were a daily part of the fabric of his life. Sam has degrees from Oklahoma State University and Cameron State University. He taught language arts at the secondary level for eight years and has traveled Oklahoma as an artist-in-residence in over fifty schools. Sam has performed folk tales and original stories at schools, state and local conventions, fairs, meetings and libraries, and has been a featured artist at many storytelling festivals and conventions. He has conducted many workshops ranging from story telling for early childhood workers to helping elders construct autobiographies for their families. Participants in this workshop will learn techniques to access and organize memories that they will turn into vivid stories to be retold. Stories will be first written and then presented orally, and classes will feature discussion of the works and presentations by both the faculty instructor and participants.

Writing for Children
Joyce Carol Thomas, Berkeley, California
Joyce Carol Thomas is the editor of as well as contributor to Linda Brown, You Are Not Alone: The Brown v. Board of Education Decision. She is also the author of The Gospel Cinderella. Ms. Thomas' books have won many prizes and awards, including The National Book Award as well as the American Book Award for her first novel, Marked by Fire. Her readers include the entire family, for she creates books for children, books for teens, and books for adults. Her last position was as Professor of English at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, where she focused on teaching creative writing. This workshop for writing books for younger readers will use the picture books The Gospel Cinderella and What's the Hurry, Fox? to address the following: describing characters that young children will adore or hate; naming the heroines and villains; creating an easy to follow storyline; painting the setting with descriptive words; making up new words; slipping giggles and laughter between the lines; reading the work aloud; and listening to yourself and listening to your characters.

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