I had the great fortune to recently attend your five-day Color Intensive Workshop. I learned more in this workshop than I had in all my prior painting study. You are simply the best teacher I have ever met.
You undoubtedly hear that often, so I must clarify as to why anyone would not dismiss my feedback as an intermediate painter, as I might be only naively enthralled by a fresh approach.
I am the Director of Psychiatric Education for the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine (VTC) and an Associate Professor at both VTC and at the University of Virginia (UVA). I was inducted into the UVA Academy of Distinguished Educators in 2005. I have won 25 major university teaching awards in the past then years. I teach physician assistant students (pre-doctoral level), medical students (doctoral), resident physicians (post-doctoral), and attending physicians (skilled to master practitioners). One of my most challenging responsibilities is to teach our master clinicians how to teach. I have studied teaching theory and methods, know good teaching from bad, and certainly know extraordinary teaching from excellent. I believe I am qualified to comment on your teaching.
To repeat, you are the best teacher I have ever encountered. I am a better teacher after observing you.
A few specifics: You present a sound historical and theoretical foundation supporting your theory of color and light, based on classic French impressionism and its pure evolution in selected American painters. You articulate this theory in a way that even beginning painters can easily grasp and more advanced practitioners can immediately apply. You teach a technique, easily learned, to distinguish nuances of color. You teach students to develop a work embodying all this in a method that is simple and reproducible but not formulaic, and each work is infinitely individualized and guided by your helpful suggestions. Every study by our workshop participants was unique, imprinted with the mark of that person's eye, mind, and hand. I could go on, and on, and on. Over the course of the five-day workshop I was impressed at the progression every student showed in skill and luminous vision. I was humbled by my own progression and transformation under your mentorship.
You are a master artist but also a master teacher. Were I ever to become a skilled or master painter myself, I could still learn from you. Thank you for sharing your artistic self with your students.
With respect and gratitude (to you) and hope and excitement (for me, because I am now on fire to see and paint as you do). I bow to you as a master teacher and artist. With kindest regards and enormous respect,
William S. Rea MD, Roanoke, Virginia
I learned to see color this week - colors that I didn't know were even there!
- Marylou B, Australia
I feel like I've come home. I've been searching for this my entire life.
- Susan D., Lexington, KY
It was a long way to come, but worth every mile.
- Pat D., Dublin, Ireland
There are teachers and there are painters. Rarely do you find someone like Susan, who has a gift for both!"
- Tom S., MD