Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Violets and Ivy Watercolor Painting

I'm still in my purple flowers phase.  Can't get over how much purple and green compliment each other.  My favorite purple, used here, is Winsor & Newton Winsor Violet.  It's one of those colors that I never mix with anything.  I tend to tinker with so many colors - greens (always), blues (usually), pinks (often)....but this beautiful Winsor Violet is so perfect I wouldn't touch it.  And it is so nice against the crisp white of the paper.  I drew this little vignette while doing another of my favorite things:  listening to "Artists Helping Artists".  What a wonderful show.  I listen to at least one archived broadcast every day, and am so grateful for it.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Live Oak Tree and Bluebonnets

I've been working on prints again.  I started with this Live Oak Landscape I painted a few years ago.  The print-making process is so much more complicated and frustrating than I ever imagined it would be. There is so much technology involved.  The camera, the camera color settings, the photo software and its own color and editing settings, the artist's computer monitor and its color settings, the printer and its color settings, and of course the potential purchaser and their own monitor settings.  After all those steps, it's almost impossible to get the final print colors to match the original painting exactly.  You just have to do the best you can.  And that's just the color problem.  There are lots of other areas to sort out, such as printer size capabilities, aspect ratios, paper type, ink type, etc.  I tried making prints in three different ways so far:  (1) printing them myself, (2) using a professional printer and (3) using a print-on-demand service.  All have their advantages and disadvantages.  Since I'm a micro-manager, I prefer to do all the processes myself.  But it's exhausting.  I've been working on print-making for several years, and I know I still have tons to learn.  Anyway, I have a few of these landscape prints in 5x7 and 8x10, and I'll put them in my Etsy shop.  I'll keep working on prints, because I would like to make a calendar and note cards someday.  Oh boy....

Monday, August 6, 2012

Peony in Teacup

I like to paint little ACEO-size quick studies to try out new colors and to have something small to paint in the evening after work.  Just so I can pick up a paint brush every day.  Painting small is a good exercise in proportion, too, I think.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Three Flowers in Baby Food Jar Version #3

This is the third painting in my experiment. I painted the same subject, using the same colors and the same painting technique, on three different types of watercolor paper, to see how the paper affected the results.  This last painting is on Fabriano CP paper. Each paper was CP (cold-pressed) and had about the same amount of texture. My theory is that the difference results from the amount of sizing the paper has.  More sizing means that the paint absorbs into the paper slower, which gives me more time to manipulate the paint. Less sizing means the paint absorbs quicker, which results in a softer effect. I am a slow painter, so I like the paper that I believe has the most sizing (the Fabriano paper).  I'd love to know what my artists friends think. I do these little experiments often, and am always surprised at the differences I see.  Which of these three do you prefer?
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