Monday, July 26, 2010
Negative painting is one of the most exciting approaches to watercolor painting I know! It is a unique approach of painting around an object to define it in your composition. When working in watercolor we have challenges that other mediums do not. It is what we don’t paint that becomes the most important.
General description to the process:
Draw design. Be alert of the space/shape between objects.
Wet paper with clean water and charge juicy paint into the wet areas (limit to 3 colors).
Tilt paper or use spray bottle to help paint move and mingle. Don’t over work the surface with a paint brush. Let Dry.
Start painting the space between the shapes with glazes. Soften edges as you move out from subject matter.
With each glaze you’ll add new shapes and darker values.
If you would like to learn more about this technique and take a workshop please see my workshop listing. Up coming workshops
Friday, July 16, 2010
Yesterday I painted at Lacy Park in San Marino. This is a group I regularly paint with each week. Number one I do not like the heat and it was predicted to reach 100+ degrees. I had a terrible morning! I put my sketching gear in the car with only slight intention of actually using it. I had planned to show up only for a brief time and be on my way. I am so glad I went! One of our members Luz came dressed in a beautiful costume from head to toe. We gathered under the shade of the trees and happily painted away.
The interesting thing is I had showed up with less than optimistic attitude and left with my spirits lifted and feeling recharged. Art does have a way of healing the mind and spirit. So even when you don't feel like showing up it may be exactly what you need to do. Just a thought.
Sunday, July 4, 2010
If you want to feel inspired the thing to do is jump start the process. When I enter my studio with the mind set of “play” I find the creative part of my brain kicks in and the painting session is energetic and productive. Now on the other hand if I walk into my studio expecting a masterpiece I instantly feel the muscles tighten in my neck and I become dissatisfied with everything I do.
To get the creative ball rolling I start by doing timed contour drawings in pen. I consider this approach “play” and I even go as far as setting a timer so I don’t let the drawing become too involved or precious. The kind of contour drawing I do is what I call continual line contour. What it means is once I put the pen on the paper I don’t lift it up until I’m done. There will be a certain amount of distortion to the drawing but I consider this part of the charm. I start by drawing a single object in 3 minutes and work up to an arrangement of 3 objects in 10 minutes. Once I feel warmed up I’ll introduce watercolor into the timed session but work no longer than 20 minutes on the arrangement.
These “play” sessions have become energizing and creative times. In my studio I keep a box of objects to draw such as jars, kettles, paint tubes, brushes, mugs, tools and silk vegetables. It’s funny how the mind acts when you set a timer, absolute complete focus!