Bella SOLD private commission
8" x 10" watercolor
This girl had such a sweet face, she was a lot of fun to paint. I love her big brown eyes. She reminds me of a cocker spaniel my family had when I was growing up. The sweetest dogs ever. :)
I hurt my back while I was at the gym the other day (the price I paid for doing 60 round house kicks in 30 seconds without warming up before. D-oh!) and my amazing husband and sweet kids have been taking such good care of me. So, for the first time in a long time, I've had time to just sit and think. And of course my mind turned to art.
I realized that I've never really talked about why I love watercolors so much. So, here's my list. Let's hope it's coherent. :)
1. They are beautiful. Watercolors have a free spirited kind of beauty that is unlike any other art medium. They have a mind of their own, and you gotta respect an inanimate object with free will.
2. They're challenging. What can I say? I like a little bit of a challenge. I love that every time I sit down to paint there's a physical challenge (the race to paint that section of paper before it dries and turns into a complete disaster instead of a thing of beauty is a bit exhilarating, and addictive.) and a mental challenge (I wonder what would happen if I layer this color on top of that color??).
3. They're diverse. There is NOT only one, traditional, correct way to paint with them. Contrary to what is sometimes believed there is not only one, correct way to paint with watercolors. They don't always have to be loose and splashy. If that's your style and that's how YOU want to paint, then great. Awesome. I'm happy for you. But, that does NOT mean that it is the only way a watercolor can, or should be painted.
One of the things I love about watercolor is it's versatility. There's no limit to what an artist can do with it. You want to paint a photorealistic still life of a mug of orange juice? Great. Do it. You want to paint a landscape plein air in five minutes flat with colorful, juicy washes running down your paper? Fabulous. Can't wait to see it.
You want to combine a little of both for a portrait of your kitten?? AWESOME. Let the games begin. Keep your mind open to all the possibilities that are in front of you. There's nothing that says you have to paint a certain way in order to be a successful, or a happy watercolorist.
4. They are easy to clean up. I'm a mom. I clean up messes a lot. I think this one explains itself.
And the number one reason why I love watercolors is. . .
5. They call to my soul. Sometimes I get a new issue of a watercolor magazine and look at the great art in its pages and I'm surprised to feel tears building in my eyes when I see all the magnificent work there.
I can't explain it. I don't really know why I'm drawn to watercolors the way that I am. But I am. I love them. I love the bright colors and the white paper. I love the feel of my wet brush gliding across the paper. I love the smell of my paints when I take the lid off of my palette. I love watching my paintings transform right before my eyes as the paint and water dries. It's just magic.
I just love watercolors. And I always will. :)
Your turn. Why do you love your chosen medium?