This painting is made from value spots of color that the eye connects and makes into a form that has substance and volume. I love to find those value spots and when I can build a painting using clean color it is a delight.
I thought this was a good image for the Fourth of July holiday. I would love to be at a beach but I live in the Mountains and beaches are hard to come by.
Peony quest is winding down . I think I may be on my last two. Thanks for hanging in there with me while I went on my annual "nutty nut" of a painting spree. It was great to read all the comments on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.
PI love swimming. I love the feeling of swimming because it is like flying. I do not have access to a swimming pool but I look at them on pinterest endlessly. They are a fantasy for me.
This is how Peony Quest looks today. I still have a few more to complete. The peonies are looking more scarce outside the window and I think once again they have shown how strong they are. They are perennials and I like to think I am too.
Here is a snap shot of Peony Quest so far this year. Well sort of. These are the ones in the studio I have just as many in my bedroom . It has been a busy time. Finding the volume and mass of these blooms has been my primary concern. There are a few more days to go but I think "peony goals" will be met and I am pleased with the results so far.
This year I have no time to spare. I am painting peonies with an aggressiveness I have not had before. I thought approaching them with softness was the way to go but it turns out not to be true. The shapes and textures of these beautiful and sturdy plants requires a directness and now I see how to break down what was complex into simpler forms.
This one was painted for all the hero fathers. My Tom was one of them. He was the best "Mom " a father could ever be.
Looking to create volume by finding value masses and connecting forms. Simplifying the complicated to the most essential shapes. That is the essence of peonies to me.
Below is how the day begins, a peony collie, day in June.
Time for a three step watercolor. It is peony Quest time so let's paint peonies. Step one below is showing how to block in the dark shapes that create the connecting forms.
Now that the fun times are over ( I love step 1). It is time to find the mid-tone shapes and connect those. This is the make or break (step). The painting will fail or succeed based on if you can make this step happen.
Now it is time to put in the background and move on to more peony adventures. But first I wanted to share my new favorite painting called "What Glove?"
This painting makes me smile every time I look at it.
I wanted to show a post of "How I roll". This is a the final picture I painted of a Rough Collie on a stroll. Below you will see the set up and the first step where I mass in the darks.
I have a great easel, the original photograph and my ipad set up with the the value viewer app on and the NOTAN pattern clear for me to see. I don't always use this but I wanted to show how technology helps me "see" where I need to go in terms of value choices.
Yesterday I painted my usual way using paint that was the consistency of "gravy" . Below you will see the result of painting that way.
But last night I watched some videos that demonstrated putting in a background using paint that is the consistency of "butter".
This made me toss and turn all night until this morning when I had a chance to try it out. So now I am thinking "What if paint was the consistency of butter?"
Watercolor can be many things, water, tea, sauce, gravy , butter and each one of these thicknesses is another variable to explore.
Peony Quest 2016 is officially on. I will be painting peonies until until the brush falls out of my hand and the peonies are on the ground in puddles of petals.
If you want to make a cool Keep Calm graphic here is a free place to play and do it. It is an app called photofunia.com
Check it out. They have really fun things you can do and believe me if I can do it so can you.
I am a watercolor coach, watercolorist, and author.