Unwind 20×14 watercolor (sold)

I’m back from a weekend of selling watercolors and printmaking at the Artwalk in San Diego’s Little Italy. I’ve posted photos below from Beech & India Streets; 350 artists line up on 15 blocks, alongside turn of the century Italianate houses, and spiffy new mirror-glass office buildings and high-rise condos, just a few blocks from the ocean. By the end of the weekend, 100,000 people walked through the show, and in addition to the art, attendees enjoyed live music, food (the Italian sausage booth is always very popular, as is the funnel cake served with powdered sugar, fresh berries and whipped cream) and photo ops with San Diego Police SWAT vehicles and face painting, etc. Have you ever attended the Artwalk? What’s your favorite art festival?

This weekend, I’ll be at the 54th annual Sierra Madre Art Fair from 11 to 6:00 on Saturday and 11:00 to 5:00 on Sunday. If you’re in the area, stop by my booth (#20) and say hello. 🙂

Artists unloading and setting up in the rain early Saturday morning – this is the less-than-glamorous part of art festivals. #work


Banners up and down India Street in Little Italy promoting the art festival Friday night


A neon sign with mosaic tile pillars crosses over India Street in downtown Little Italy


The rain cleared and the sun came out to shimmer geometric reflections in the building behind my booth on Saturday


By Saturday afternoon, the crowds came out to stroll in the sun. See the tall ship and the pacific ocean at the end of the street? 🙂


The lovely patterns and colors directly across from my booth on Beech Street. Little Italy is full of young people living in these recently built, modern apartments and condos. Just 10-12 years ago, this part of town was run down and marred with dilapidated warehouses and crime. Now, it’s very metropolitan, and you can hear languages from all over the world spoken by locals strolling hand-in-hand with their kids (and dogs).
One of my favorite watercolor painters *ever* is Charles Reid. I think I have all of his books, and I took a workshop with him a couple of years ago, and befriended his charming, funny, warm-hearted wife Judy. They flew in from Connecticut to teach a still life & figurative painting workshop, so they braved the crowds and took a cab to the art festival to come and say hello. Look at how cute they are. #iadorethemboth

If you’ve not yet read one of Charles’ books on watercolor, have a look at any one of them, and try some of his exercises. I especially love the book Painting by Design, because he explains strategies to help those of us who noodle our paintings to death (my hand is up) soften the grip on the brush, and plan the *whole* design to focus more on the color and shapes in the entire painting, instead of counting flower petals and eye lashes, etc. I love his work, I think he’s a treasure trove of painting and drawing insights, and he’s also a huggably nice person. Have you read his books or taken a class from him? And do you know about his relatively new facebook page? If not, check it out.

This is for anyone out there who struggles in the studio, or wrestles with the myth that they can’t be an artist because they don’t have “talent”.   Watch this 6 minute CBS news interview with Angela Duckworth.  Her new book is titled Grit; the Power of Passion & Perseverance. If you apply what Angela is saying to your art – you’ll hear a hopeful, and potentially plan-altering directive in her message. Success is not hinged on talent; your achievements as an artist are dangling in their entirety on your ability to bear down, focus and stick to your practice. #peptalk  I plan to listen to Grit the audio book this summer in the studio. Watch the interview on the CBS web site here.

 Thanks for stopping by today, and I’ll see you in the next post!
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Art Quote

The secret to success is consistency of purpose.

~Ben Disraeli

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4 thoughts on “Watercolors: Unwind (& Art Festival photos from San Diego Artwalk)”

  1. Marilyn Thuss

    As always, thanks for sharing Belinda! Great photos. Loved the video and ordered Painting by Design…..can’t wait to see it. Hope you had the fun of selling some of your paintings and prints!

    1. Hi Marilyn, Thanks for the visit. I bet you’ll love painting by design! His exercises are challenging for the realist in all of us, but his work is so painterly and wonderful, and there are many lessons to be learned. Happy painting!

  2. So nice to virtually tag along with you at this event! I was pleased to meet the Reids an immediately followed his facebook link. Thanks to bloggers such as yourself, my online artists network is growing exponentially with no end in sight! Very much appreciated Belinda!

    1. I’m so glad to introduce you to them. I’m certain they’ll add an air of water&pigment delight to your growing cadre of artists, and I hope you feel inspired!

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