Today is a spectacular fall day with crystal clear blue skies and temperatures in the high 70s–not too hot, not too cold–just the way I like it. The leaves are just beginning to change colors and I can’t wait to see the show. All this fall goodness got me in the mood to paint something with a fall theme, so I whipped up this colorful fall fairy complete with a magic wand and pumpkins just waiting to be turned into Cinderalla’s coach. Now All she needs is some white mice to be turned into horses, and away she’ll go to meet prince charming.
This painting is based on a tutorial in Linda Ravenscroft’s book, The Fairy Artist’s Figure Drawing Bible. I’ve learned so many new painting techniques from the tutorials in this book. It was definitely money well spent.
My daughter painted this beautiful yellow Asiatic lily during a recent mother/daughter painting session. We haven’t painted together in a while, so it was nice to have my favorite painting partner join me for an evening of painting, small talk, and pumpkin lattes. To create the background texture, she sprinkled sea salt on the paint while it was still wet. It adds a lot of interest to an otherwise very simple painting.
As usual, she completed her painting first, so I’ll be showing my latest painting as soon as I finish it.
Pink Lilies in Watercolor
The gorgeous gold tone on the flower buds and stems is green gold by Winsor Newton–one of my favorite colors. It looks fabulous paired with the pink and coral tones in the flowers. I painted the veins on the leaves with white acrylic ink and a Number 1 round paint brush. This painting is based on a tutorial in Fiona Peart’s book, “Vibrant Flowers in Watercolor.” It’s a great book for beginning–or seasoned–watercolorists. Watercolors and acrylic ink on cold pressed Acquarello Artistico paper by Fabriano.
Here are some close-up views:
I thought it was about time that I posted something other than a watercolor painting. I picked this project from a book that I bought way back in 1998–Painting Garden Birds with Sherry Nelson–but never used. The book offers a series of lessons in oil painting but since I no longer have any oil paints laying around the house, I gave it a try with colored pencils. Prisma Color and Verithin colored pencils on gray Canson Mi-Teintes pastel paper.
This adorable illustration of my dog, Piggy, was created by the talented Sarah How of Ninja Beaver Studios. You can view more of her fabulous work here and on my daughter’s online sim game here (shameless plug for my daughter’s game).
The drawing was a surprise gift from my daughter a few years ago. I just found it on an old computer and thought it was time I put it to good use on my blog. I think it’s especially appropriate for use as my avatar since Piggy always manages to make an appearance in my photos. I think he enjoys the limelight.
I’ve chosen the kitchen as my studio because lots of fabulous food is generated (and eaten) here, it’s sunny and warm, it has a great view of my garden (more on that in my next post), it has great lighting, and its open layout allows me to chat with my daughter and mother while I work. Plus, the large table provides plenty of room to spread out and a place for other would-be artists to join in on the fun (like my 5-year-old niece, Dani, who’s visiting today).
Here are a few shots of my kitchen studio.
The first thing I did when I unpacked my art supplies was to grab a sheet of watercolor paper and start experimenting. I wanted to try out my tools to see what they could do. So I grabbed a cup of water and a couple sheets of paper towels, picked up a paint brush, and got down to business. It wasn’t long before my daughter, Greta, joined in.
So we stood there at the breakfast bar at 9:00 pm, still in our work clothes, and played. We tried wet-on-wet techniques (wetting the paper before paint is applied), dry painting techniques, using the paint straight from the pans or tubes, mixing colors, layering colors, adding ink details after the paint dried, adding ink first and applying paint afterward, layering multiple washes of paint, and lifting sections of paint with paint brushes or paper towels. Here’s the end result of our little play session:
For the past 20 years I’ve earned a living as a professional artist generating computer graphics for a variety of clients and corporations. I haven’t picked up a paintbrush in years. But recently I’ve felt a strong urge to get back to basics and create art the old fashioned way–with paints and a paintbrush. So here I am with my first post on my new art blog. I’ve chosen to focus on watercolors because I love their transparency and versatility and mostly because I’ve never used this medium before and wanted to try my hand at something new. I love a challenge.
But first I had to assemble my artist’s toolkit. So I visited my favorite art blogs and made a list of the tools of the trade and began to assemble my kit. It took me a while to acquire all the items on my list. There aren’t many brick and mortar art supply stores in my area. I wanted to be able to see and touch my art supplies, to hold them in my hands and try them out before I purchased them. I found most of what I needed at a local art supply store and two different craft stores, but had to purchase the remaining items online.
It wasn’t a cheap undertaking. At each store I spent about $150.00. That brings my total initial investment to about $500.00 spent over the course of several weeks. But enough of this babble. It’s time to jump in with both feet–or both hands in this case. So, sit back, grab a cup of coffee, and follow along as I explore this new medium. I hope you enjoy my work. I look forward to your feedback and comments.