Abigail Ryan, Abbey Ryan, Painting, Painting a Day, Daily Painting, Daily Painting Blog, Drawing, Ink, Works on paper, MFA, Hunter college, New York, NY, Philadelphia, PA
Testimonials - Abbey Ryan




I love teaching painting and the long-lasting connection it creates between my students and me. Please take a moment to read about a few of the wonderful painters who have participated in my Private Painting Mentoring, and what they have to say about their experience working with me. I'm humbled and honored to work with each one of them. I highly recommend that you also check out their websites, and follow their work!

To apply for Private Painting Mentoring, click here.






McDonough Stephen McDonough

"Since my Mentoring session, the impact on my work has been Huge, overnight. The mentoring session over Skype gave me great insight into what I was doing wrong and how to correct my application and technique in simple to understand explanations. I saw immediate improvement and had a feeling of great satisfaction. I was overlooking, or unaware, of my mistakes in color, edges, palette, and material. After the mentoring session it really opened my eyes to how to approach a painting, and how to execute a better painting.

I liked that Abbey gave concrete detail to improve my work immediately. Also, she gave long term goals, and a very detailed Advancement Plan after the mentoring session.

Private Painting Mentoring has helped with improving my work, increasing my motivation/confidence, and insight into resources and material to use for my painting.

I Highly recommend Abbey's Private Painting Mentoring. If you're looking to improve your work, and grow as an artist, then this mentoring session is a wonderful opportunity to do so. On all levels I think Abbey touched on what I need to do as an a painter and artist to take my work to the next level. I now believe that I have a path to follow to achieve my goals.

Based on the reviews, and by seeing Abbey's work, I knew she was the right person to help me. A BIG THANK YOU to Abbey!!!
"

Please view Stephen's paintings on his site.




Christiansen Nikki Christiansen

"Since my Mentoring session, I'm excited about implementing all the techniques and tools that Abbey informed me about that can take my painting to entirely new level.

Loved the face to face Skype session, seeing Abbey's Studio behind her made me feel like I was a friend. She is such an approachable person and no question is too silly. Would love to do it every month!

Private Painting Mentoring has helped because I was able to gain a new perspective in order to move forward in my painting. From tools to my personal space and where I should sit in order to get the best results. Such valuable information that can dramatically alter your results.

Seeing Abbey's paintings have always inspired me so to literally have the opportunity to sit across from her and hear her evaluate mine was priceless! The fact that she is so approachable, kind and funny was unexpected and quite wonderful.

This was the first time I'd ever done something like this and am thankful I had the money to do it. I would highly recommend it to anyone who would like a down to earth, professional painter and skilled teacher evaluate your work. Abbey was more than I could have hoped for.

I think so much of the mentoring session is about my intentionality following Abbeys feedback regarding my paintings. She leaves herself available for questions and I really cannot think of anything more a student can ask for.
"



Walker Jan Castle Walker

"I love talking to Abbey. She is positive, bright, insightful, and just knows how to get good information out there with out being judgmental, competitive, or overbearing. So, the best part was having a candid conversation about my work from someone I respect. I find it hard to find anyone who has enough of a candid view to share and offer direction. I am from a time when most critics are focused on the concepts of 'use a bigger brush', 'don't sweat the details,' 'you should be able to describe an object with one stroke.' etc. Well... I don't do any of those things, and I don't think that kind of direction leads to helping me.

Abbey is respectful of my process and she starts at my point of development for offering direction. It is a strategy that is good for me.

I think that until I took two of Abbey's workshops, I couldn't really understand how mentoring would benefit me. During both of the workshops her observations and suggestions were spot-on, and in particular, during the second session I watched her mentor another painter whose work had grown and matured under Abbey's guidance. Initially, I was concerned that the fee was high and wanted to have some reassurance in my mind that I would realize some benefits.

Since my session, I am painting most days everyday, a morning session and an afternoon session. I still get to the 'teenager' stage, but honestly feel like 'if I really want that painting,' I can get through the ugh stage with less anxiety. I also realized that my painted forms are pretty flat and I fell over backwards because I love 'form' and yet I am painting it like I don't know much about lighting and translating that into paint. Actually, I have found this realization very motivating. And it is making me look much harder at other painters who do this well.

Private Painting Mentoring made me value what I do and showed me how to make progress in my work. During the last four months, I have been unaware of what could make enough change to become excited again about painting. As I love painting, this was kind of a daunting problem. Through Abbey's comments and observations, I feel like I am just (again) beginning to improve my awareness and sensitivity to the subject matter I choose to paint. I am more motivated than I was because I see what I need to try to improve and kind of know how to do it.

I would recommend Private Painting Mentoring to any artist who would like honest and helpful feedback about their work. This artist should be able to create goals for their work and be willing to follow through with seeing the value of Abbey's mentoring. I think a mid-level career artist is ideal for this mentoring. I think someone who loves to paint but is having a hard time getting to it (through strange acts of putting it off) will most appreciate Abbey's outlook on painting and on her mission to 'paint in the moment.' She says we are all lucky we can paint, and we are. At the same time, painting is hard and causes anxiety. She has great insight on how to offset that anxiety and help cure procrastination.

I kind of carry Abbey in my back pocket. I think that means she is a good mentor. Thank you, Abbey, for the insights. I hope I can go forward. I like painting more now, in a new way... I like that I have some concrete problems to solve and I like that my world is very small and I can perhaps make myself a decent painter.
"

Please view Jan's paintings on her site.




Littlepage Dawn Littlepage

"Abbey is thorough, thoughtful, clear, grounded, experienced, non-judgmental.

The best part was the the Skype call -- the face to face interaction.

Since my session, I feel clearer about how to start. I am more able to dive in with more confidence and not waste time on areas that I had no experience with.

I look forward to learning more from Abbey ... through her email blog, re-watching all her YouTube videos, continuing with mentoring sessions, and someday attending a live workshop."



Ward Sr. Ana Rivera

"Abbey is a wonderful teacher and being able to speak with her directly and listen to her insights were a great help. She has a gift for noticing where you are having difficulties and is very practical in her suggestions.

I have always had a problem with procrastinating before beginning a painting. Abbey helped me to understand the reasons for my fears and what would make me put off painting. Private Painting Mentoring is a great way to learn if you have little to an art school or art instructor, or if you are not able to travel to take classes.

There are good artists that are not good teachers, there are art teachers that are not good artists. Abbey is good at both.

She is so calm and focused."



Ward Yolanda Ward

"Before registering for Private Painting Mentoring, of course the cost was a consideration, but I believed that it was something that I needed and wanted to experience.

I think Abbey is FABULOUS! I am so happy that I finally got the opportunity to experience Abbey's wonderful gifts!

Since my session, I am eager to begin. I have no hesitation about what I am doing or about to embark upon.

The best aspect of Private Painting Mentoring is Abbey herself. I liked that it was just Abbey and me talking. I liked that she took the time to understand my work and what I would like to do as well. I loved Abbey's Painting Assessment Worksheet that she gave me to fill out in advance; it made me think of things I had forgotten about. It was such an easy process.

Abbey's feedback is invaluable!! I am now more confident in what I am doing. Her guidance has opened me to the possibilities that are awaiting me. From Abbey's private mentoring I know for sure that I will continue and that I will be successful. And I love the continued access to Abbey and her private resources.

I think Private Painting Mentoring will benefit anyone who is at a crossroads with their art, their process or their talent. Anyone who is looking for someone to genuinely guide them in continuing on their journey would love how Abbey turns all the road signs around and lights up the way to continue on the creative path. Abbey made everything so clear.

I am looking forward to more uplifting moments with Abbey.

This process is wonderful."

View Yolanda's paintings. <-- Coming soon



Fuentes Crista Fuentes

"Before signing up for Private Painting Mentoring, I hesitated to make the financial investment, and I also hesitated to give myself credit as an artist. Prior to the session, I had been wrestling with questions about what value there is in creating art and sharing it with others. The session with Abbey proved to be worthwhile in addressing this concern. Witnessing Abbey's heartfelt commitment to painting got me in touch with my own deep-rooted belief in this creative work. I was inspired by Abbey and grateful that I had invested in myself by signing up for her mentoring.

Since my Mentoring session, I feel a deeper sense of joy around the ritual of painting, as well as an openness to the challenges that come with it. I cherish Abbey's insights about honoring your own personal rhythms and building a painting practice that works with your opportune times of day and routines. I also find that I feel more confidence when I arrive to paint, which I think connects back to the very practical, thorough advice that Abbey offers when she discusses options for painting techniques.

I loved Abbey's thorough organization and personalized approach. Shortly after signing up for the mentorship and sensing how much detail Abbey wanted to cover in our time together, I knew that I was in very good hands. I saw throughout our session that Abbey had really given her full presence. She was able not only to delve into the questions I posed, but to also intuitively sense the "questions behind the questions" in what I was asking. I am moved by Abbey's ability to create profound connection with the people she speaks to. Every part of her approach to mentoring demonstrates that she feels invested in helping others to grow on their creative paths.

I have been able to take the input about painting materials and techniques and apply them immediately to my daily practice. I have also been able to put some of my long term goals about painting into perspective, and to start moving towards them while embracing the fact that it all happens one day at a time.

I would definitely recommend Private Painting Mentoring. One reason is because it is so comprehensive. Anyone interested in deepening their practice of painting will benefit from the feedback provided in the session, regardless of which aspect of their art they are focusing on. Another reason is because the set up of the mentoring promotes a lot of healthy self - reflection. Chances are that a person who signs up will have already uncovered insights for themselves before the session starts just by filling out Abbey's Painting Assessment Worksheet. The session is such that the information that is shared takes time to fully sink in, so there are longterm benefits to draw upon after the session has finished. Finally, I would recommend the mentoring because of the power of Abbey's presence as an artist. There is something about having the exchange with Abbey through the mentorship that is completely nurturing to the artistic process.

Abbey shares herself in a personal way along with all of her insights about painting. Being able to hear about how my own rituals (including the ones that may seem mundane) create an impression of how painting figures into a larger picture: a grounded way of life.
"







Complete Private Painting Mentoring details are here.
The next Mentoring spot is open in 6-8 weeks.
Sign up HERE to secure your spot.





Little Brandi Marie Little

"I hesitated to join Abbey's Private Painting Mentoring because of the cost and I wondered how much I could really get out of an online mentoring session.

Once the process actually began, I was so amazed at the time and effort that Abbey put into my mentoring session. I have attended many in person retreats and classes in which I later was not able to integrate what I learned into my personal process, and I had the complete opposite experience with this!

Everything was super catered to my process and needs. Specific questions were finally cleared up for me with honest, experienced answers. I believe that Abbey really wants for her students to succeed.

Since my Mentoring session, I have noticed more confidence in my painting. I have already utilized some of the lessons I learned regarding background and edge quality. The fears are still there of course, but I feel I have more direction now and more of an ability to conquer them.

I loved the one on one Skype session with Abbey. Actually having an artist that I respect take the time to listen to all of my fears and questions and give me feedback was invaluable. Her ability to retain information and give truly well thought out responses and advice amazed me. I felt that her responses were so specifically catered to my personal process and needs. And just the fun of talking painting with another artist for over an hour!

I have already improved my background technique and have a more clear idea of specific things I need to work on in my paintings. I feel more confidence in my process and my ability to move forward. I really value the knowledge I learned about studio set up (still working on implementing that), varnishes, and oil painting mediums. I'm just so excited to have a more clear path in which to move forward!"

View Brandi Marie's paintings.






Keyser James Keyser

"My hesitation in doing Private Painting Mentoring with Abbey had to do with was it going to be money well spent and is my painting accomplished enough to merit the advice of an accomplished painter such as Abbey Ryan.

After Private Painting Mentoring, I more confident in my process from compositional choices to actual brush strokes.

I liked the conversation included topics such as motivation, inspiration and the unexplained need to create a painting for no one's particular benefit and why we feel compelled to do it. Discussing the the shared experience of the journey that is the creative process. For me at least that conversation is an inner dialogue, and it helps to say it out loud to another liked minded artist.

Meeting with Abbey was a validation that what I have been doing is worth pursuing.

It was beneficial to me at this time in my artistic career. Art is such a lonely pursuit and sometimes we need some one on our team. As artists we often feel like we are speaking a foreign language that most have a hard time comprehending. Having someone assess your work in a non-judgmental way can help you get your priorities straight, and clear out some of the self doubt that clouds the artistic process.

I felt a great connection between Abbey and me, in particular during our discussions about the creative process. I feel these are invaluable for an artist -- we need to bounce ideas around and validate thoughts that occur during the creative process."






Price Carol Price

"Before signing up for Private Painting Mentoring, I was not sure if it would be worth the money or if it would really help me. Now that I've done it: I really liked how the session was specific to my work and questions. The biggest change for me is that I understand why I was having the problems in the process and now I feel more confident to address them.

The process is very individualized and helpful.... I really enjoyed getting to know Abbey. Her warm and friendly personality made me feel as if I had a new friend!

She really has a gift for teaching... I appreciate that she took me right where I was and really gave me specific things to consider.

I would most definitely recommend Abbey's Private Painting Mentoring! I can't wait to get started on all we talked about!"






Lingjaerde Diane Lingjaerde

"Before signing up for Private Painting Mentoring, I didn't really hesitate; I just felt that this was the right thing to do in the Now.

Since my Mentoring session with Abbey, I have gained new inner strength through the sharing of new insights, both technical and inspirational on all levels up to the most spiritual expression of light.

Private Painting Mentoring included Abbey's incredible professionalism, organization, mail follow-up and the actual (unique to my understanding) mentoring itself. More importantly and uniquely, Abbey has the utmost depth of understanding that I seek in a mentor.

This was a very challenging period of my life; this process has enlightened me in new ways of apprehending my vocation as a painter, giving me new paths to follow as well as new ways of overcoming the old obstacles. I have regained fresh motivation and confidence.

I would definitely continue with Private Painting Mentoring; Abbey has this genuine eye for beauty, and the clear vision of how to accompany whomever opens to her -- a very rare teaching gift to help each and everyone grow at one's own specific pace and in one's own direction.

It was a beautiful experience to me, and Abbey has an amazing presence."






Complete Private Painting Mentoring details are here.
The next Mentoring spot is open in 6-8 weeks.
Sign up HERE to secure your spot.





Tabor Charles Tabor

"I really did not anticipate the time and thought that Abbey would put into the Mentoring process and into my paintings. Abbey has a good mixture of personality/teacher that allows her to get her point across in a positive way. It was nice to get constructive criticism that left me feeling enabled as an artist. I think Abbey's painting mentoring session has and will make me a better artist.

I had two concerns about participating in Private Painting Mentoring: (1) Whether it would not be worth the money, being that a week-long workshop is generally only around $600-$700; and (2) Whether it would be somewhat intimidating, being that I had never really discussed my art with anyone and Abbey is a very successful and talented artist.

I believe that Abbey's advice will enable me to continue progressing in my art and to approach it with a more critical eye (e.g., I think the critique and suggestions will allow me to evaluate my art with a "different perspective" than I have in the past).

I enjoyed the one-to-one discussion. It's nice to have another artist spend time focused on my painting and helping to improve my art.

Overall, I feel better about where I am as an artist and where I am headed."

View Charlie's paintings.






McDowell Darla McDowell

"Since my session with Abbey, I have been much more thoughtful about my process. In the past, I've tended to just paint for the sheer practice of it, but going forward, I am going to make a conscious effort to be more introspective. Also, I have already implemented a few changes with regards to lighting and my palette, and I'm looking forward to exploring more of the materials listed on Abbey's Resource pages.

I really enjoyed Abbey's critique and her Advancement Plan. I was amazed by her insight into my work. It was truly remarkable.

Abbey has given me a great deal of insight, information and inspiration. I'm sure that I will continue to process it for some time. I am thankful for the issues in my work that she addressed and for her thoughts/ideas on how to overcome them.

It has been a very thought provoking experience, and it would be a wonderful opportunity for all painters."

View Darla's paintings.






Denstorff Debbie Denstorff

In my view, Debbie is most interested in the delicate balance between realism and more expressive loose brush strokes. Her works have a vibrant quality of light and she's so open to various subject matter. Overall, I think Debbie's strength in painting is her initial understanding of the "gestalt" or immediate impact of the painting image.

Here is what Debbie says about Private Painting Mentoring:

"[On signing up]: Naturally cost was a factor for me. However, when I looked at what I had spent on workshops in the past, I thought, this one is personal and worth it.

I liked the personal approach. Abbey did a great job in preparing for our meeting. She went through before, during and after shots of my paintings and her feeling on them through my process. It was easy to know what she was talking about because they were my paintings and I knew first hand what I had been through to create them.

I have absolutely benefitted from Private Painting Mentoring with Abbey because I have more confidence in my own decisions and paint now with less fear. My "self talk" is more positive and that's a good thing. I don't have to hire someone else to come sit with me and give me their opinion.

I would definitely recommend this Private Painting Mentoring to anyone trying to decide where they want to go with their painting. Abbey does an excellent job in guiding you."

View Debbie's paintings.






Brennan Renee Brennan

"My only hesitation to participate in Private Painting Mentoring was the cost, but it was worth every penny!!! Now I know where to concentrate in the painting process.

At first I wasn't sure about the face to face Skyping thing as I had never done that before. Then as we got started, it was great! I felt ok letting Abbey see my workspace as crazy as it was, and also made it easier for her to draw up a new workspace plan... I loved that. Going to set it up soon.

As a result of our session, I think that I will be more confident going into a painting and confidence for me is sometimes difficult.

Also, Abbey is so generous with her knowlege and thoughtful with how she approaches a subject. Even when she critiqued my weakness, it didn't make me feel like a failure or anything negative.

Abbey is easy to talk with and a VERY good teacher!! I thought the session was fantastic! I am filled with more inspiration and validation as a painter."

View Renee's paintings.






Dreyer John Dreyer

"When considering signing up, honestly, cost was a factor. I was also concerned because it was not a format that I had ever participated in.

My session with Abbey was very inspiring. I felt flat, confused, and extremely hesitant to even start a new painting. I've set aside an area in my basement and had a great amount of trouble getting the lighting right. Of course, considering the mind set that I was in, I certainly considered that I was self-sabotaging and making excuses to myself. Abbey's suggestions led me to immediately start experimenting with light and I was more encouraged than I've been in months.

There were many things I enjoyed about the session but the greatest thing I came away with was the sense that she really, really cared about helping developing artists. Abbey's patience was refreshing and helpful and her keen observations critiquing my work proved to be invaluable.

I can definitely say I have been energized mentally. I learned new things and had received many pointers. Some of these teachings and critiques turned out to be things that, here-to-fore, had never been pointed out to me in the 5 years that I've been studying painting."

(No website yet, unfortunately.)






Complete Private Painting Mentoring details are here.
The next Mentoring spot is open in 6-8 weeks.
Sign up HERE to secure your spot.





FlinnShirley Flinn

"My concerns about participating in Private Painting Mentoring had to do with how it was going to work, and value for the money. I have taken courses that I didn't feel I got value for the investment I made. I will tell you, I'm satisfied -- Abbey has inspired me to continue my pursuit learning how to continue the journey of being the "best I can be."

After my session, I went right down to my space. I'm planning some more pieces to try to work on what we discussed.

I admit the technical ability to show the painting and Skype at the same time was awesome. I had spent some time thinking on how I could do that, and Abbey had it covered. Abbey's kindness and openess, her ability to express herself in a way that was easily understandable, was very enjoyable. It left me wanting to get to learn more from Abbey; I feel she is very special.

I feel Abbey has given me a gift of inspiration to work even harder to paint. And maybe some day paint a still life that demonstrates greatness in technique and yet shows my soul. That has always been the goal; I'm a little closer than I thought to that happening in the future.

To all who are unable to travel to one of Abbey's workshops, this is a wonderful way to communicate with her. It's the next best thing to being there. Abbey has a wonderful way of communicating, that many artists who give workshops don't. I know that Abbey can help and inspire others to continue their pursuits."

View Shirley's paintings.






Duke Roxanne Duke

"I had many concerns about participating in Private Painting Mentoring. I love to paint, it comes from within me, but talking about ideas, theories, techniques, and artists, I tend to freeze in my thoughts. I felt ill prepared to discuss painting techniques that puzzle me, or ones that I would like to explore. Although art has been a huge part of my life, I tend to shy away from discussing what role I play, or see myself playing, in the art world.

It is well worth the money to be a part of a one-on-one with Abbey.

The aspect I appreciated most was Abbey's one-on-one candor in reference to the fact that we, as artists, all share similar fears and procrastination. This is a great new beginning for me.

Simply stated, I have benefited by a change of mindset.

Abbey is so open, and easy to talk to, discussing both painting issues, and mindset issues, and readily offering advice, and painting information to assist an artis
t's growth. I was so nervous before my first session, but graduated with a powerful insight into my personal issues, how to rethink my goals, and how to proceed to accomplish them.

It was truly a wonderful learning experience, and I will treasure this opportunity always."

View Roxanne's paintings.






Carr Linda Carr

"By participating in Private Painting Mentoring, I saved travel time to a workshop, air fare, hotel expenses and eating out.

I believe that Abbey's advice will enable me to continue progressing in my art and to approach it with a more critical eye (e.g., I think the critique and suggestions will allow me to evaluate my art with a "different perspective" than I have in the past.) It helps to have new eyes look at your paintings and see details you might have overlooked to improve your artwork.

Abbey shares her skill and knowledge to help artists move to a higher level of quality in their paintings."

View Linda's paintings.






Bingham Bruce Bingham

In her paintings, I think Bruce's strengths are her complex compositions, her control over the color "key" in the work, her expressive use of color, and balance between abstraction and realism.

Here is what Bruce says about Private Painting Mentoring:

"I first hesitated to do Private Painting Mentoring because it feels like a very vunerable situation, one where I admit to a lot of emotional issues that trouble me. I was a little concerned about our age difference, which didn't matter at all, I don't think.

Since our conversation I've decided to narrow my focus on my painting. It's like Abbey gave me permission to do that. I'm going to make an effort to shift from 'pushing' to 'allowing.' I've decided to pursue what I love about painting. Quality is more important to me right now than quantity. I still paint everyday but I guess you could say I'm trying to raise my game.

I think Abbey is very insightful and thoughtful. I appreciated her perspective on my work and suggestions on what she felt my strengths are. Also on ways to make the work more engaging. I'm considering all of that now as I paint.

The conversation we had was great and the Advancement Plan gave me a few AH HA moments. It was good to see in black and white my strengths, what we discussed that could be stronger, and the focus on where I want my painting to go so that I can focus on developing a signature style. I loved and was inspired by the artists Abbey suggested I look at.

Private Painting Mentoring is a wonderful way to gain focus, clarity and direction. Abbey is a very sensitive and insightful person and I can't think of any reason why anyone wouldn't benefit from her observations."

View Bruce's paintings.






Propst Anne Propst

"I am thrilled to have the professional point of view of an artist I admire. I also am thrilled that Abbey found my strengths and moved me towards working off those strengths. I would never have found my route on my own.

MY confidence is elevated and the fun is just beginning.

Abbey is a great resource to self-exploration.

I am so thrilled with my exploration and the journey Abbey is guiding me into."

View Anne's paintings.







Complete Private Painting Mentoring details are here.
The next Mentoring spot is open in 6-8 weeks.
Sign up HERE to secure your spot.





Finally, watch this short video to learn about my Teaching Philosophy:







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