Belinda Del Pesco

watercolor portrait
Joyce 5.5×8.5 Watercolor

I’ve recently started a new blog series called Link Love to share artists (both painters & printmakers) I’m enjoying on youtube. (You can see the first two here & here) This week, I’d like to introduce you to a young animator & illustrator named Alina Chau. Her web site gallery features whimsical illustrations for books and animation projects, as well as a section on her sketchbooks and studies. Her illustration is fresh and light-hearted, and there are hints of folklore, anime, fantasy and make believe in her designs. Her use of color [juxtaposed warm & cool] and her lovely application of pattern [multi-layered glazing done in watercolor] envelope & highlight her focal point beautifully.

She has just a few watercolor demos on youtube, so you can see her process of watercolor glazing on a stylized Princess Leia illustration here, and it’s a pleasure to watch her confident hand fluttering lightly above the art as the pigments come to light on the paper. You can also watch her from concept sketch to final art on a book cover, which involves abandoning an illustration that’s well underway, and starting over to get to something closer to the heart of what she’s looking for here.  I could relate to this one a lot, both for the frustration of an unquiet inner voice saying something-isn’t-working, and her joy on the second attempt while using a nostalgic family photo as a reference. Check her yet-to-be-published works in process on facebook too. It’s all quite lovely.

If there is an author, artist, or illustrator you enjoy, please share a link or a name with us in the comments. I’m clinking my coffee mug to yours in a toast to shared #inspiration!

Art Quote

One can always acquire the additional knowledge and information that go into the production of a work of art, but – and I insist on this point – no will, no perseverance, no obstinacy during one’s later years, can ever make good a lack of practice. And is there any anguish like that of the artist who feels the realization of his dream compromised by the impotence of his execution? 

~William Bouguereau 1885

6 thoughts on “Watercolor Portrait of my Aunt Joyce”

  1. I like Alinas work , I just donot like speed painting as a beginner , I like to know what colours are used and brushes also teqniques sorry! I have learning difficulties, so imformation is important to me .

    1. Hi Joyce, I understand you’re wanting specifics as a beginner. If you’re interested in books, you might have a look at Adele Earnshaw’s ‘painting the things you love’ – it’s great for color choices, paint application and reference materials, etc. Are you browsing youtube for watercolor channels? There are so many good ones that post real time, instead of speed painting. Have a look at Patrick Ley-Greaves: and Mark Crilley who posts both speed and real time versions of his drawing videos:
      Thanks for the feedback, and happy painting!

  2. Marilyn Thuss

    Wow Belinda! This is stunning! Your treatment of the light in the room has me amazed. I keep staring at it to try and understand how you did this. I also love the fragile nature of her arm. You captured the beauty of aging, if you know what I mean. Did you use masking or lifting to get your bright whites? Her face is beautiful and the glassware is awesome. Thanks for this post!

    1. Hi Marilyn, Thanks so much for the great compliments! Painting the folks in my family is pretty special to me, and this portrait of my Aunt Joyce was done right after a visit with her. She is a beautiful woman, so that helps a lot, and the light in the room was dusk and gorgeous in Central California. I didn’t use masking fluid – that’s the white of the paper – I painted around it. 🙂

    1. Hi Cristiane! Isn’t Alina’s work just wonderful!? It’s equal parts simple & layered & rich, and I love her use of glazing in watercolor. She’s so good! I’m glad you like her too!

Write something.... pretend we're neighbors, and I'm handing you a home made cookie....