PSoA’s “Art of the Portrait” Conference–Art Camp for Grown Ups

So I am finally getting around to blogging about the Portrait Society of America’s annual “Art of the Portrait” conference that I attended back in May. Why now you ask? Well I have a ton of excuses for why I haven’t gotten around to it sooner including; summer break for my 6 year old, having to get work done for my local studio tour and a vacation in FL. But what actually made me think about the conference this morning was dropping my son off at art camp and thinking to myself  “Humph, wish I could go to summer camp” and then suddenly realizing that I ALREADY HAD!!  And it was by far the most enjoyable & inspiring conference I have been to yet!

If you are an artist, with a passion for figurative work and portraits AND have a pulse–you should be attending these conferences. The following is your typical artist reaction upon running into their art heroes, all at once at the PSoA conference. At least I know this is how I behaved.

Seriously–where else do you get to rub shoulders with David Kassan, Alexandra Tyng, Casey Baugh and Casey Childs (think Corey Haim and Corey Feldman of the art world), Rob Liberace, Rose Frantzen, Bart Lindstrom, Mary Whyte, Burt Silverman, Ellen Cooper, Daniel Greene, Nelson Shanks and the WPW gals? I mean the list goes on and on. And here’s the thing some of you many not know–they are actually people and will talk to you. I know, blows your mind right? OMG!!!

So the socializing & networking are some of the best reasons for attending but there are other reasons like learning from these amazing artists who are so generously giving of their time & expertise during workshops, “Lunch & Learn” or just drinking a beer with them at the hotel bar.  And one of the coolest events you must experience is the highly anticipated “Face Off” where the “faculty” paint from live models during a 3 hour period and you get to walk around and soak up everything before you.

Here are a couple of photos I took to make you envious that you did not go. And I will be making subsequent posts about all the tips, tricks and fairy dust these magical artists shared so stay tuned!

“Face Off” demos during the opening night for the PSoA’s 2012 “Art of the Portrait” Conference. On the left Stephen Early, on the right Rob Liberace.
Casey Baugh “Faces Off”. Bart Lindstrom working just behind Baugh’s easel.
David Kassan being mobbed by his fans (me among them) during the 2012 “Face Off”.

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