21
Mar

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Five Printmakers to Follow on Instagram

In Between Chapters 6×6 reduction Linocut Give Printmaking a Go Printmaking methods, and the approaches within each method are a perpetual ocean for exploration and experimentation. Add to that artists’ layering of techniques – and hacks on traditional procedures – to create a bottomless channel available for deep study. The best way to dip your toe in the wonderful world of printmaking is to take a weekend workshop, so you can be guided through printmaking in action, with an understanding of the materials and sequences. If you work well with printed directions and solo creative endeavors, you can follow along with a printmaking …[Continue reading]

11
Mar

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The Artist’s Search for Self

Sage and Cider 12 x 16 Graphite and Watercolor on paper (add this to your collection) We Don’t Know What We Don’t Know One of the most conflicted facets of my adventure to become a full time artist was the tug of war between what I am drawn to create, and what the collecting public finds appealing in art. I started the I’m-Going-to-be-an-Artist journey with a truckload of conviction: studio hours were set from 8 to 5, and then I launched an art blog (2005) and joined every art group I could find. At the same time, I subscribed to art/print trade magazines …[Continue reading]

5
Mar

leeinthegarden72

Bonnard Inspired Portraits: Painting the People You Love

Lee in the Garden 6.5 x 3.5 watercolor on paper (sold) Prolific Pierre Bonnard In addition to Bonnard’s bathing nude portraits, and window/still life interiors, he painted lovely genre scenes of his people. If you’ve visited this art blog before, you know I’m partial to these subjects in my own work, so it’s no wonder that I appreciate Bonnard’s approach to what might be seen as mundane or trite scenery. (Here is a video slideshow of over 700 Bonnard paintings.) Finding a subject that resonates with you is part of every artist’s seeking adventure. It has less to do with the dictations of …[Continue reading]

1
Mar

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Still Life inspired by Pierre Bonnard

Vintage Sink – 4 x 4 inches – watercolor and colored pencil on paper Artists Transform Things Pierre Bonnard painted walls, windows and surfaces that were festive with light and color, but those objects – by themselves – were simple. His decision to use bright yellows with flecks of cerulean blue and viridian green to render a plain white wall in his house has a message of permission bequeathed to artists after him; play with color. His paintings whisper to you and me: “Look for interesting geometry in your compositions, and monitor your values. And when you like the way your eye travels …[Continue reading]

22
Feb

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Inspired by Bonnard – Painting Interior Scenes in Watercolor

Reading Chair Summons 9.5×12.5 Watercolor and Graphite over paper (available in my Etsy Shop) In the Car with Bonnard I’m still thinking about, and staring at Pierre Bonnard. (If you missed the previous posts on my current muse, you can read them here and here.) I’m leaning into painting interior scenes in watercolor after looking at Bonnard’s untroubled vignettes from around the garden, and inside the bathroom and kitchen of his home. His colorful paintings pull me into them. (Subscribe to this blog.) Building values with layers of glazed watercolor Interior, Pierre Bonnard Glad You’re Here, C’mon in! Bonnard paints the people he …[Continue reading]

20
Feb

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Watercolor Portrait – and Combating Discouragement After a Failed Painting

Intermission 12×16 Graphite and Watercolor on paper (available in my Etsy Shop here) Flipping Feelings of Discouragement I start every piece of art with sparkly goals and bubbly excitement for What-it-Could-Be. My favorite part of every painting is The Beginning. Frequently, the last brush stroke is steeped in a whirlpool of feeling bummed that it didn’t come out the way I envisioned it in my mind, buoyed with an attaboy that I finished. The end of the art is not even close to the excitement of the beginning. Building layers of transparent watercolor (also known as glazing) – and adding items that invite …[Continue reading]

15
Feb

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Learning Color and Composition from Bonnard

Looking for a Map 8×6 graphite and Watercolor on paper Look Around You Pierre Bonnard (1867-1947) was a french painter inspired by the rooms in his home, his yard and the people in his life. I can relate to this close-proximity of inspiration – the sense that everything worth painting is within arm’s reach around you. I especially love that his homes were very simple and somewhat plain, but his paintings of those rooms are a kaleidoscope of wild colors. Adding transparent glazes of watercolor over the graphite The Dressing Table – Pierre Bonnard Up Close, and Far Away Have you ever seen …[Continue reading]

13
Feb

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Graphite, Watercolor and Colored Pencil Portrait: Once Upon a Time

Once Upon a Time 9.5 x 8.5 Mixed Media portrait in Graphite, Watercolor and Colored Pencil (available in my Etsy Shop here) For the Love of Words Have you ever staged a painting based on a series of images? I have a collection of inspiring art saved in a few categories on Pinterest, and one of them features readers. I love books (I’m listening to this one right now), and the escape to other places, with imagined people, with their loves, longings, humor, and fate is such a great pleasure for me. The magic of words and writers, and the worlds they paint …[Continue reading]

11
Feb

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Watercolor & Pastel – Gold Line in Little Tokyo

Gold Line – Little Tokyo 8×8 Watercolor & Pastel on paper (sold) Using Photos from Friends in Art  I’m fortunate to have very generous family and friends when it comes to artists’ visuals.  My tribe sends me images to paint all the time. They might be walking along a street in New York, or eating croissants in a cafe in Provence, France, and voila! I get a text with images, or an email with attachments. The good little eggs in my life are so kind. A gaggle of people sending bits of color and shadow, or an angled street scene, or light curling around a …[Continue reading]

23
Jan

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Mango Reading Chair and Finding More Time to Paint

Mango Reading Chair 16×12 watercolor on paper (available here) Incremental Art-Making Painting in short increments can solve your Not Enough Time to Make Art quandary. I talk about this in my free course Six Tips to Paint More, and I live by, and believe in this approach. When you’re just starting out, knowing how much time you need to make some art can be a guess, or a preconceived falsehood. If all you have is 20 minutes here, and 40 minutes there, take those slots, and make something in them. I’ve marked the dates I worked on the watercolor in this post in …[Continue reading]

18
Jan

In the Land of Basil

Making Art vs Making Airplanes

In the Land of Basil 8.5 x 8 ” pencil and watercolor sketch Productive over Perfect Fact: Perfectionism crushes creativity.  An effective way to recover from perfectionism is to start creating. That might seem counter-intuitive, but it follows the same contrarian path towards recovery as other challenging situations. Heartbroken over the end of a relationship? Go volunteer, and give of yourself. That outward act of generosity can backfill your internal noodling of sad thoughts. The good light of giving that you’re shining on the world contradicts the dark weight of your heart’s woes. Car broken into, and something stolen? Buy yourself a cup …[Continue reading]

16
Jan

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Painting Small Portraits and Figure Studies in Watercolor

Painting Faces and Portraits in Watercolor Do you enjoy sketching and doodling faces in watercolor? I know some of you do, since I follow your blogs and the work you post on social media. I was talking to another artist friend about the pleasure, and the power of doodling the human form – both faces and the figure – as well as isolated facial features. We can all use a bit more practice in this area, right? Have you ever filled a sketchpad page with little thumbnails of facial features, expressions, or angles of the head? Want to give it a try? Oh …[Continue reading]

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