Jan 28, 2016

Building a Forest - Art Tips and Techniques


I love to walk.  I usually walk 4 or 5 kilometres a day in the winter.  In the summer I often walk more especially when we are camping.  The difference is I am usually walking on trails. 

One evening while camping on Texada Island, one of my fellow campers and myself set off down a trail to see some old growth firs.  There are a few isolated trees in tiny pockets throughout the coastal forests.  It is an awesome sight to see a Douglas Fir or Cedar so big that 7 or 8 people with their arms outstretched could not go all the way around it.  It takes your breath away.

We set out along the trail and walked and walked.  We found the trees but trouble started after that. 

The trail was billed as a loop, we thought why backtrack, let's do the loop.  We walked and talked and walked, the trail was good but no end in sight.  We could even hear people talking but could not find our way out.

We seemed to be going in circles.
WATCHING THE EDGE - 2.5  x 4.2 - Watercolour
 Painting can be like that.

Sure the work is good but somehow it is always the same.  The next level seems so close but somehow out of reach. 

We found our way out. On our own. Hours later. To do it we had to really try something different. At first it seemed we were headed the wrong way but suddenly a turn in the path brought us out to the road, we were home free then.

Moving out of the box, trying something new sometimes seems like the wrong way. You feel it may be a waste of your time. New things lead to new discoveries. 

Working with my tangles has at first seemed a long way from my usual work.  (My daughter would certainly tell you that!) But my tangled forest series has really lead me to new things.  Shadows and Reflected Light have become my focus.  When I build my forest with patterns and colour I found I had to use shadows and reflected light to make my birds and animals really 'settle in' to their new home.

Note the reflected light on eagle. 
(Sorry I should have photographed him before I added the bits of yellow and green to his wings and underbelly) Believe me, he looked so out of place before they were added. I wasn't even sure I could do it. Put green and yellow on his lovely white chest!!  It seemed so wrong. You know a bald eagle is white and black. I was desperate.  He just didn't look right.  So I did it!   Once I did, I realized the difference it made. Of course he would get reflected light from my 'trees'.

Try stepping out of your box.  New adventures are waiting for you.

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Have a great artful day, Wendy


Brenda Hill CDM said...

Just stunning Wendy!

Wendy Mould AFCA said...

Thanks, I am glad you are enjoying my little side trip into the tangled forest.