Jun 27, 2014

Is each painting really unique?!!


Can we as artists duplicate a painting or drawing?

Is each piece a "one of a kind"?
Line Dancing - 14 x 18 Framed - Ink & Watercolour

This really came to the forefront for me with my previous picture, Fire Dancing.  I really liked that picture but at the same time I wondered if it would have been better with some colour in the background.  You know how we are never satisfied and always wanting to try more.  Because of the technique I used, it was not a simple matter to add a background.  The inks would run and I would lose the sense of realism that I wanted.  In order to add a background it had to be done first.  This meant starting over again!!

I hummed and hawed for days and finally could stand it no more!  I jumped in and went for it.  

I wanted the picture to be just like the first one so I could really judge the effect the background made.  I tried.  I really tried. I used the first picture as a reference to draw the second, I kept the first picture and my reference material in front of me as I drew  and painted.  But it didn't work!  Yes, the composition is very similar but you know watercolour and ink.  When they begin to flow, hang on!   You might think you are the driver but really you're riding shotgun!!  

So, my pictures are unique, truly one of a kind. Maybe it is different in another medium but for watercolour - good luck trying to make them exactly the same! 

Oh, as to the background colour, I love it with this picture but still not sure for Fire Dancing.  I can see that putting the background in first sets the tone for what is to come.  My response to the colour and movement will be different.  I guess I will never really know the answer to that question.  In the meantime, I have two pictures that I find very interesting!!  How about you, white or colour in the background?
Have a good day,

Jun 15, 2014

Out with the Old, In with the New!!!


 Old for New?

Black and White to Coloured?

56 years to 0!

No it is not magic, just a lot of hard work!

Here's how it happened.  It started with this photograph which is 56 years old and starting to deteriorate but still very much prized by its owners. 

My challenge was to recreate the picture so it could once again be enjoyed.  I was very excited to take on this job. Working with old photographs is something I really enjoy.  I carefully took the old frame apart so not to damage the picture further and scanned it so I could examine it in Photoshop.  The original was faded and really was more gray and white with a few marks on it from life.  After cleaning it up I printed it out so I could work with it.

My next step was to meet with the owners and discuss the project in greater depth.  In interpreting the picture in colour I did not want to stray too far from their memories.  (Although the values were there, the colours were not.)  Once we had our plan I set to work and "Memories of Days Gone By" was born.  I was pleased with the results and the owners were thrilled.
Memories of Days Gone By - watercolour, 8 x 10

If you have an old photograph you would like renewed let me know.  I would enjoy working with you to bring your memories to life.
Have a great day,

Jun 9, 2014

Taking Inspiration to Life!!!


Inspiration - Where does it come from?

 Can it be lost?  Can it be found? 

Here's one place to find it - your sketchbook!!

For me it started with this sketch in my book.  I was doing a demo on adding excitement to your journaling. I wanted to show a new combination of materials. I was using a mixture of the Elegant Writer Calligraphy Pen, watercolour and watercolour pencils. I needed a picture to sketch and grabbed a photo of my poppies which are in full bloom right now.  As I got into the demo I really got excited, my poppies were coming together really well. I had to move on to other examples but I could hardly wait to get back to my page.
As soon as I could I finished my picture.  I loved it!  
Steve loved it!  I knew I had something!

I grabbed a large sheet of paper and got to work.  The pens are tricky but very fun to draw with.  Once the outline is done, you are ready to paint.  When the ink is flooded with water it begins to separate into beautiful pinks and blues.  When mixed with watercolour the colours change even more.  You are never sure of the results but oh, what wonderful blends of colours! Be careful though, the ink never really sets and so any water brought close to it will immediately move it. But with a careful hand as you can see, lots can be accomplished.  I finished up The Fire Dance with some touches of watercolour pencils and she was ready to show. 

The Fire Dance - 11 x 14 - Ink & Watercolour - Available

Have you had a special moment when a new idea just hits you? 

Keep your eyes open you never know when it will happen.  
Have a great day and Happy Painting,