The challenge: Create some form of visual art, no matter how small, each day for a full year. I’m on day 8, and it has been a bit of a struggle today.
I’ve finally finished all the beginner food items from the book: Watercolor Success in Four Steps by Marina Bakasova. I’ve moved on to flowers, and today’s little tulip really destroyed a bit of the ego.
I didn’t have any of the colors, and I think it really made a difference. She called for Rose, Green, Green light, and Umber (not Burnt Umber). I used Permanent Rose, Sap Green, Hooker Green, and Burnt Umber. Nothing worked right. The Burnt Umber kept pushing the sap green out of the way when I did the “little drops,” and the permanent Rose spread out too fast and didn’t gel in those tiny drops like in her picture. I did a second attempt (see the right pic), but I used a layering technique instead of using drops to darken. It worked better, but the paper started disintegrating. (Strathmore Student Grade paper. Enough said.)
I definitely got frustrated, but then I decided to start playing around with the paint. What if I used a combination of layers and droplets? What if I used the paint straight from the pan instead of watered down with water? Did the colors I used matter? I discovered something amazing:
Layering is awesome, and the intensity of the color magnifies with each layer. I also prefer layering to dropping water on wet paint, but that is me.
I started playing around with sap green. Could I make a simple brush stroke look like it had dimension? I layered the sap green a few times, letting it dry between layers. Then I added a layer of burnt umber and got a really good looking stump, almost like a barrel cactus, and the burnt umber gave it a more intense, shadowy effect.
It’s silly and nothing, but one of those things that awakened something. Maybe this is how doing a bit of art everyday helps develop skill. The brain starts thinking and experimenting and discovering.
On to bed, y’all. See you tomorrow. 🙂