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Painting from photographs workshop

Instructor Dan Mackerman works with a student. Mackerman is teaching a three-day workshop at The Phipps, March 1 – 3. Submitted photo

Painting from Photographs, a three-day workshop for adults, will be offered by Dan Mackerman, Friday, March 1 through Sunday, March 3, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at The Phipps Center for the Arts in Hudson.

The instructor explains, "Regardless of your painting skill level, beginning or advanced, it is likely you have used a photograph as reference. Many artists have spoken about the limitations of photographs and the pitfalls of copying a photograph directly. Other artists, such as Maxfield Parrish and Norman Rockwell, used photos extensively. If you are knowledgeable about the limitations and understand that the photo is simply a starting point, a photograph can be a great tool. This workshop will explore the issues surrounding photographs as references by analyzing where they fail, and then learn the editing tools needed to create a painting that surpasses your reference.

"The first day will be spent learning the techniques of reading and editing photographs, followed by two days of putting that knowledge into practice. Bring your painting or pastel supplies with some reference photos, either printed or on a tablet."

Mackerman has been a full-time painter and sculptor for over 27 years. Highlights of his career include projects with the following institutions: Disney, Animal Planet Television with Sesame Street's Jim Martin and Tim Lagasse, Paisley Park Studio (Prince), The Mayo Clinic and Children's Hospital of Minneapolis. Of particular note is his work as a designer and sculptor with the Dayton's/Macy's 8th Floor Holiday Show, where he collaborated with such notables as author Tomie dePaola and Liccy Dahl, for whom he designed sculptures that are permanently on display at the Roald Dahl Museum in Buckinghamshire, England.

Mackerman's work is on exhibit nationally in over 65 public collections and has been featured in several media outlets, including KARE 11, Minneapolis Star Tribune, St. Paul Pioneer Press, FM 107.7 Radio "The Ian and Marjorie Show," and Midwest Home Magazine. He has received numerous grants and awards in juried competitions, most recently a Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative Grant in 2018. He is currently represented nationally by several galleries, including Aesthetics, Inc. in San Diego, Calif., and American Art Resources Gallery in Houston, Tex.

Mackerman holds an M.F.A. from the University of Minnesota in Painting, Drawing and Art History. His teaching experience includes work with the following institutions: The University of Minnesota; Minneapolis College of Art and Design; The Lulea Tekniska Universitet, Skelleftea, Sweden; The Minneapolis Institute of Art; The White Bear Center for the Arts; The Minnetonka Center for the Arts; The Edina Art Center; and the Minnesota Museum of American Art.

The fee for this workshop is $225, and a materials list will be provided.

For more information or to enroll, go to, call 715-386-2305, or stop by the center.