8" x 8" acrylic on canvas panel
When I was little my parents got me a pony that I just loved. But she, on the other hand, was not too fond of me when we first met. She was very shy and wouldn't let me get too close to her. So I did what any rational ten year old girl would do: I stuffed my pockets full of apple slices and headed out to the pasture to make friends with her.
It took a few days of patiently following after her, and watching her prance away from me, but eventually she let me get closer and closer to her, and soon she was eating the apples out of my hand and following me around.
This painting is not of my childhood pony. The pony in 'Diminutive' belongs to my Facebook friend, Alpha Farm Horses, and when I saw the photo I based this painting on it reminded me so much of my own pony that I had to ask my friend if I could paint her. I can almost feel her warm breath in my palm and the sticky sweet apple slices in my pocket again. Good times. :)
This painting was actually my second attempt. The first painting was a smaller size and MUCH brighter in color. So much in fact that when I finished painting it I stepped back, tilted my head and said to myself:
"Dude. I just painted a My Little Pony."
Pony in Technicolor was not the look I was after. But, being annoyingly persistent, I painted it again, a larger size this time, and really liked the results.
This year I've kind of felt like several different artists crammed into one person. I paint in watercolor, then switch to colored pencil, then back to watercolor, then switch to acrylics, then back to watercolor. . . You get the picture.
Even though sometimes this has made me feel a little, um. . . crazy, it has been really great for me as an artist. Because it requires me to think differently with every medium. Color mixing with acrylics is so much more direct, I can mix brighter colors right off the bat (remember Pony in Technicolor?), and it satisfies that part of me that wants to paint looser and more impressionistic-like.
So, when I go back to painting with watercolors I bring everything that I've learned with acrylics and try to apply it in some way. Which results in more growth, and an appreciation for the familiarity I've gained with watercolors after years and years of work.
And, switching back and forth, always trying something new, is GREAT for keeping artist's block at bay. At least it has been for me, so far. I'll try not to jinx it. :)
How about you guys? Anyone else seen the benefits of working with more than one medium?
Until next week my friends! Huzzah!