Friday, 30 October 2015

Small, Medium and Big

A Touch of Paradise
Unframed size 56cm x76cm
Thank you for your welcome home comments on my post last week. I have slipped easily back into the routine in my studio, painting every day when I can.
I started with a small work adding to my Etude series, capturing the face of a Giraffe from our day at the Dubbo Open Plains Zoo. This helped me get my brushes moving by keeping the subject simple.I followed with a little doggie portait which was a thank you gift. 
A medium work next painting a Kangaroo who had dashed across the road in front of our car.
Up next - using a full sheet of Saunders Waterford 425gsm paper and no pressure (hah hah just $15 a sheet) I painted a Bird of Paradise using some of the bright colours on my travel palette , colours I had taken to do the Fabio Cembranelli workshop end of last month. I painted the single stem flower first and left it over  night. When I looked at it the next morning I decided if I leave the white of the paper it will look a bit like a botanical study so I took the whole of the second day and my imagination to fill in the entire sheet with an abstract background.What next - I am just finishing a first in a new little series and will share this next time.
The Long Etude
27cm x 35cm
20cm x 28cm

The Dash
27cm x 52cm

Thursday, 22 October 2015

Back to the Studio

After more than a month away from my beloved studio I am now back, sorted and with two little paintings done, easing my way back into my routine. Routine is not really the right word as that makes it sound like some sort of work commitment. For me it is just where I want to be every moment and only when an offer of getting out is really appealing do I not unlock the studio door and lose myself.
The workshop I attended in Queensland with Fabio Cembranelli was supposed to be for 5 days. We traveled more than 2000kms with our caravan taking just over a week to get there. It seems no one else was interested in doing the full 5 days so I was refunded and just did the 3.
It was a great experience to watch an international renowned watercolourist and find out which of the myriad of techniques he uses to create his unique works. He did only do florals as it turned out to be to hot to go out and do any landscapes.
One needed very much to be a visual learner as Fabio does not like to talk and paint so any questions needed to be held until he finished. He demoed full paintings, start to finish, 2 per day but this left us not a lot of time to paint.  I would have preferred to watch him start and then just go paint rather than watch every brush stroke. I am a quick painter which helped in the limited time but for many they struggled to get finished paintings and if they did have questions along the way they may be well out of mind by the time the demo was finished.

Did I learn anything new - No, but it did confirm my own approach to working was right. Working for hundreds of hours by oneself these are questions that you wonder about,

Fabio approaches his florals using his imagination even if the starting point is a single bloom reference. We were encouraged to create this way and so as this is how I always paint florals I was well in my comfort zone. Original work is always guaranteed this way and it was interesting to see what the rest of the attendees came up with.
I did spend a bit on supplies before I went and purchased his "workshop materials" so that I could get the most from the event.
This included synthetic brushes which I have come to enjoy using and will continue to do so until I am sure whether or not they are me.
My very expensive sables have worn considerably in just over a year and I may well not replace them.
I added some new to me pigments for the workshop (finding that some on his list he said he doesn't use anymore!!).
In summary I thoroughly enjoyed being in the room to observe Fabio paint and to be with keen watercolour lovers of all levels.

Here are the two most pleasing and finished works of the 4 paintings I did during the workshop I did not seek help with any of my paintings and am pleased they are original and unique as they are my own compositions and my own colour choices.

Colourful Poppieson 1/4 sheet Arches Cold Press 300gsm

Scent of a Roseon 1/4 sheet Arches Cold Press 300gsm