Painting was founded by Mr. Frank
Spenlove-Spenlove, R.i., at the "Yellow
Mr. Spenlove-spenlove giving a demonstration lesson in the studio.
Door" Studio, Beckenham, S.e., in 1896, on his return from Paris.
It was one of the first private art schools to be opened near London, and is within a twenty minutes' train run from either Victoria or Charing Cross, and since its inauguration no fewer than fourteen thousand students have passed through the studio, coming from Russia, Japan, France, Spain, Canada, Australia, and the United States to work under the famous landscape painter, who is not only one of the most enthusiastic teachers imaginable, but has an extraordinary gift of imparting to his students the secret of success.
Mr. Spenlove-spenlove maintains that the French system of teaching is better than the English, because French masters take students up and train them individually; and his own school is run on practically the same lines as the great art schools of Paris.
The great secret of successful teaching is, he thinks, to adapt the particular class of teaching to the particular class of tastes which each pupil may happen to possess. One cannot take a dozen students and teach them all after one fashion; the master should guide his pupils to develop their individuality, and consequently there is, as there should be, an extraordinary variety of styles to be seen amongst his students' work.
Special facilities are offered by this school to those who desire to take up landscape painting as a profession, and Mr. Spenlove-spenlove has all sorts of most excellent "tips" for painting pictures which will sell for those who must make money from the outset of their artistic career.
One great secret is to choose subjects for which there is a demand. "Sketch places of interest until you make a name, and then the public will be willing to think your work interesting!" So Mr. Spenlove-spenlove tells his pupils, who evidently follow his advice, for at the Women Artists' Exhibition every student who sent up to it sold a picture !
The art of "picture-making" is a special science in itself, and students at Mr. Spen-love-spenlove's landscape painting classes are taught the entire process of painting a finished picture suitable for exhibition from the original sketch.
Many students who go to Mr. Spenlove-spenlove can already draw and paint quite well, but when about to make a picture are at a standstill. These students can often
A student of the outdoor sketching class at work. Pupils are encouraged to make studies quickly out of doors, which ate worked up later into finished pictures
The Arts be put almost at once on to the right road for doing work suitable for exhibition, for the study of pictorial treatment and composition are two of the most important branches of the teaching at the studio, while at the special demonstration classes pupils have the opportunity of seeing Mr. Spenlove-spenlove paint a finished landscape from some tiny rough sketch before their eyes, thus gaining an immense amount of practical insight as to the right way of doing a similar piece of work on their own account.
One of the first things Mr. Spenlove-spenlove aims at is to give students self-reliance, in order that they may develop their own individuality and learn how to apply the knowledge they already possess.
"The landscape painter must aim at the interpretation of Nature rather than the representation of Nature," said Mr. Spenlove-spenlove, whose students are urged to give rein to their imagination, remembering the words of Corot-surely one of the most exquisite of all the great landscape painters-who said, "I look at Nature, I go home and dream of her, and I paint the dream !"
Turner, again, always worked from the slightest of sketches and rough notes, and Mr. Spenlove-spenlove thinks this undoubtedly the right method of procedure, and accordingly, in teaching landscape painting, his system is to encourage his pupils to make swift realistic studies from Nature out of doors, seizing some transitory exquisite effect, and afterwards to study the art of transforming these rough notes of a passing effect of the moment into a finished picture in the studio, both by means of individual instruction, which each one receives, on the working up of his or her own particular small sketch, and by means of his special landscape painting "demonstrations" before the assembled class.
Each one seems to be working on some entirely separate scheme of his or her own, and handling it with much breadth of view and with delightful freshness and determination, and is both instructed and entertained by the privilege of following in Mr. Spenlove-spenlove's wake as he goes from easel to easel, teaching, encouraging, and criticising the work of each member of the class in turn.
He will start, perhaps, with a young girl beginner with a small sketch of a haystack-part of the outcome of a day spent with the outdoor sketching class-pinned up on one side of her easel, on which reposes a large drawing-paper block upon which she is about to paint a landscape from her sketch.
Mr. Spenlove-spenlove sits down before it, and gives the following advice: " The first thing to do is to find the strong lights and strong darks. Always try to think exactly what the effect was. Haystack against dark tree, light playing round the edge of the haystack. Well, put on straw colour to start with; let the drawing be firm and decided, and do as much as you can whilst it is wet. Try to see pattern in every brush stroke you put on, and let that pattern be design, telling a story. Begin with the warmest colours-never put on blue first-yellow represents the light. Above all, go in for purity of colour in the big mass, not in little dots. Wear your brush out at the shoulder, not at the point.
"There is sunlight, too, on the top of the tree. Well, work up to the strength, and put the shape of the tree in in darks, before the first washes are dry, and put the sky in last of all."
A beginner receiving valuable and personal help from the master himself a vista of landscape in the distance. Rustic models are always posed at the studio, to be referred to when needed, for introduction into a picture.
Several landscape painting students seem in despair about their skies. "Come to the door,' cries Mr. Spenlove-spenlove, marching them out in a body to take a good look at the sky overhead. Then returning to the studio, he seizes a block and proceeds to depict the sky thereon with the help of a lump of cotton-wool used instead of a brush, and in the twinkling of an eye getting a wonderful effect of light and space, until each one feels that sky-painting is the easiest matter in the world when once one knows the right way to set about it. After this there is no more talk of not being able to tackle a sky, at least for that day.
This section will give information on gardening topics which will be of value to all women-the woman who lives in town, the woman who lives in the country, irrespective of whether she has a large or small purse at her disposal. The range of subjects will be very wide and will include:
The Vegetable Garden
The Window Garden