It’s a major challenge for nearly half of my Eastern Repousse students – how to translate the technique into beautiful flowers and leaves.
Invariably, every time I have ever taught Eastern Repousse over the past 3 decades, some students design lovely flowers to “puff out.” And every time they get to the stage of chasing from the front, they get super confused about how to make the petals overlap so that some come forward in space while others recede.
I always explain that the steps are not different from overlapping abstract shapes, but the students always end up a bit more frustrated than the students who choose non floral designs.
Well, it’s not the technique, and it’s not their skill level.
It’s our brains.
Unless you’re adept at drawing like a Renaissance master, when you begin sculpting something even a little bit representational, your brain does something completely unhelpful.
Your brain can make you panic. It recognizes the pattern of a flower, for pattern recognition is our brains’ super power. Just when your brain starts thinking, this petal undulates and overlaps, so I should puff out here and later countersink here, the (dreaded) Inner Critic can kick in. The Inner Critic doesn’t want you to screw up because it wants to keep you safe. It tricks you into believing that you’ll somehow get the design “wrong,” and you’ll end up with wasted time and an unsatisfying piece. This inner dialogue can become louder than the belief that you know how to translate what you’ve learned into what you want to make. This turns into doubt about where to hit, when, and how hard.
Does this part come forward?
How do I make it do that and how much do I push it out from the back?
How much do I countersink it it from the front?
How to I make the metal curl backwards and undercut underneath the other leaf?
How the heck do I make this flat iris look 3D???
It’s just a dogwood flower. Why is this so hard?
The truth is that it’s not hard, but to say that sounds like gaslighting.
So this last time I offered Eastern Repousse online, I built and added something new:
A detailed bouquet of exactly how I take those questions and hammer their answers into metal.
Work In Progress from the Floral Module by Student Judi Schwartz
All the overlapping and underlapping and undercutting you could ever want to know about for flowers, leaves, or anything else that needs to look a bit lifelike.
What if you took my course before I added this stuff? How can you get all the info without having to pay for the whole course again and repeat all the projects you’ve already done?
Would I leave you wilting in confusion? No of course not!
For you special past students, I’m offering this as a stand alone course with that same ability to ask questions and get feedback on these new demonstrations and projects.
Yep, just the flowery bits in all 6 hours of glorious, up close detail, a course dashboard just for you, and 2 live sessions where you can pick my brain all you want.
Since it’s not the full Eastern Repousse course, there is special pricing, and since my email service has been behaving badly the last week, I’m honoring the early bird price an extra couple of days until Monday.
Access to All the Demos and Course Material Begins Monday, March 27, 2023
Live Zoom Q&A Coaching Sessions on
Thursday, April 13 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM EDT
Thursday, May 4 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM EDT