Paperwhites explode!

In this quick watercolor sketch, done with those Dr. Martin’s watercolors, this time I used a Japanese squirrel brush, which has a floppy mop with a distinctively fine point. I confess that PhotoShop does misrepresent some of these little sketches. Mostly I intensify the color. It’s a lesson to me, to be more bold with color. PhotoShop also teaches me to let go of nature’s palette and impose another on what works otherwise as composition. Here I simply clicked on the Invert option, under the Image >Adjustments >Invert menu.

Paperwhites Emerging

This heavy glossy photopaper I’m painting on is quite fun for watercolors. They can be washed off, easily corrected, the way watercolors usually can’t be. Watercolors are notorious for being difficult to correct, but this paper is almost like a computer screen for its flexibility. Once the watercolor dries, and I’m okay with the results, I spray it with fixative, such as I’d use on a pastel to keep it from smudging, and it’s fixed. Really. I discovered it when I began illustrating What’s In the Woods? and had to paint recognizable nature. Not good at this, I needed an forgiving medium, and voila! Who knew?

I scanned today’s Paperwhites painting on PhotoShop and found that I could run some color plays on it and make some really interesting variations. The original is a 10-inch square–but it wouldn’t fit on my scanner and I like this better anyway.

Mary’s EVERYDAY ART project begins on January 01!

I said I’d only take half an hour for this project but I am taking more. This one took about an hour. I don’t like it much. Maybe I’ll try this again with watercolor. Beginnings are usually discouraging for me. I usually am appalled by what I produce. But I have done this kind of thing for many years and I’ve learned that to do anything worthwhile, I just have to start doing something awful. I’ve pledged four or five entries–art or poetry–a week for a year, but even if I just did three, that’s 150 small creations, and they just can’t all be bad!

This pastel piece looks darker than it is. I tweaked it on PhotoShop. I gave a similar set of paperwhite bulbs to a friend for Christmas. I wonder how HIS are coming along!