Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Painting demonstration with Teresa Oxaca at Principle Gallery

I had the distinct pleasure of attending a painting demonstration by Teresa Oaxaca at the Principle Gallery in Old Town Alexandria,Virginia.  

The demo was to start at 5 pm and it began right on time.  Teresa first set up her model and canvas.  She was doing a sight-sized portrait so she set up her canvas directly across from her model.  Michael Mattice, a local musician, was the model...his music was featured as Teresa painted.  

While Teresa held her palette to paint her paint tubes and palette knives and supplies were stationed approximately 6 feet back from the canvas.  A spot marked by blue tape.  After almost each stroke she stepped back from the canvas to view her work from the taped mark.  It was magical to watch her glide back and forth touching the canvas and then evaluating her work.  

Watching demonstrations is always interesting.  Teresa explained that she chose the sight-sized format because she thought it would be better for the people watching.  She walked back and forth giving everyone plenty of time to witness the work as it evolved.  

Teresa painted in 30 minute increments with 5 minute breaks.  The model, Michael Mattice, never left his chair...his rest was just to close his eyes.  During Teresa's breaks, which were barely 5 minutes long, she answered questions and met and talked to her audience.  

Teresa was kind enough to explain her palette and procedure as she painted.   The whole demonstration was videotaped and will be offered on the Principle Gallery's website as well as Teresa's.  Occasionally Teresa would take a small mirror and place it just under her eye, perpendicular to her face, to see the painting upside down...to check for any changes she might want to make.  

Here is the finished piece.  It was a fabulous event.


  1. Love this post. What was the purpose of the computer that's visible in the first image, Maria? The visitors seem to be seated quite far back from her. How far would you say? I know pictures can be deceiving. Thx for posting!

  2. How lucky for you. The method seems to be an excellent one as the painting turned out well.

  3. Love Teresa's work. Did this demo painting sell Maria? I hope it got a good home.


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