Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year and Fuschia WIP update 2

Happy New Year  to all my blogging friends! May 2011 be full of joy, good health, great friendships and super painting! Thank you for your continued support and encouragement. I appreciate them more than you could imagine.

To finish the year, I am posting an update of my Fuschias' work in progress. I like the little bit of work done on the flowers where I have practiced my glazing, but am not too happy with the leaves that I have probably overworked. What do you think?

I will work some more on this today if I can to be able to start the New Year with a new painting.

All my best to all of you.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Nice way to end the year!

What a surprise this morning when I received a message from Red Bubble to let me know that my watercolor, Peony and Friends had just been featured in the group Painters Universe as Best in Show for Dec 30th  2010.

I hope to post an update of my current floral later on today....

May 2011 be full of joy and health for all of you and your family.

Monday, December 20, 2010

New WIp- Fuschias and update on retirement

I have started a new floral: Fuschias, this time. It is approx. 8.5"X 10.5 on Arches 140lb CP. I have cut a full sheet this time instead of using the watercolor pad - as mentioned in my previous WIP, I do notice a difference between the two paper formats...The loose sheet format is more forgiving and I find that it has a smoother texture...strange, since they are supposed to be the same. Perhaps the watercolor pad I have had some defect...
Here is the first progress photo: I have painted a dark background, a few of the leaves and am trying out the pinks in the left-hand side. Some of the highlight are being preserved by liquid masking. I am also trying to be patient and to use light layers of glazing on the petals.
As reference, I am using part of a beautiful photo made available to artists on WetCanvas.

Now, where is all that free time I was expecting from my recent retirement? My retirement started officially on Dec 1 and  since Dec 3, I have had to deal with a family emergency concerning an elderly relative - she was hospitalized and now I am doing all I can to find her some supported living facility...and keeping her in the hospital when the only thing she wants is to leave:-) I supposed that I should tell myself that if I were still working I would have the same responsibility, but no time to deal with it...Sigh....

I hope that you will follow this WIP - no guarantee how it will turn out, but, successful or not, I will treat this as another learning experience.

Have a great day and I hope that in this week before Xmas life and weather are being good to you!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Hydrangea update

My hydrangea painting is basically finished. I may tweak a few things before signing it. I prefer the right-hand side and wonder if I should not crop the painting this way, into a much smaller and square format:
Let me know what you prefer.

What have I learned from this painting?
-from the left to the right, I painted with a much lighter touch with clearer pigments to obtain a much better luminosity.
-my intuitive assessment of the level of wetness of this particular paper improved during the painting process.
 What do I like about this painting:
- the lower right-hand side was so much fun to paint and I like the hint of warm gold against the cool pinks and mauves.
- the highlights and the whites
What insights can I transfer to my next painting initiative?
-you really can't get into much trouble if you add thin layers at a time and if you are patient enough to let each one of these layers dry properly before the next ( I often get too impatient:-)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Hydrangea WIP-Part 2 and Artalee Feature

I have worked some more on the hydrangea although I did not get as much done as I had planned during the last few days : I am celebrating my first week of retirement with a really bad head cold:-)
The hydrangea is certainly more complex than I thought. You really have to focus on each little one point, I think I was painting mini Xmas poinsettias instead of hydrangea petals:-)
I am using Arches CP 140 lb as usual, but from a pad rather than from a single sheet - I am finding that the paper is not reacting quite like I am used to: it bruises very easily and does not allow much scrubbing to lift the lights...For my next painting, I will certainly return to the single sheets cut down to the proper size.
So, without further ado, here is Part 2 of this WIP. The photo was taken insides and it is very overcast hre today again. I rarely say this, but I think this painting looks better in real life than on this picture.

There is still a fair amount of work to do on this painting.Let me know what you think.
Please visit the Artalee site where I have just featured another of my favorite artists and bloggers, Mollie Jones.!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Celebrating a New Beginning! WIP - Hydrangea _Part I

Today is a most special day for me: it is the first day, officially, of my retirement and it is, officially, the first day of my new beginning as a full-time watercolor painter! To celebrate, I worked on a new painting, branches of hydrangea ( instead of working on my Venetian Pool Party started over a week ago). Here is part I of this WIP - hopefully the firstWIP of many for the month of December.

So far, I have only put in the dark background, the leaves, the stems and I have started on the darkest background petals. Overall, the flower clusters will be mostly light pink with a touch of mauve. The challenge will probably be to keep a unified look to the painting. It has been raining here all day and I took the picture indoors with a flash; consequently, the colors are probably a bit off.

As always, I love to hear from all of you!