Thursday, February 10, 2011

Rediscovering Watercolors

I've been rediscovering watercolors this week. I babysat one of my friend's daughters this afternoon, and we spent a good chunk of the time painting wit watercolors (since I still had them out from teaching my other friend's son an art lesson earlier in the week). The following two pictures are what I painted today...

I had some printouts from a lesson I did at a homeschool co-op last year. The project we did was taping some line drawing printouts onto a window, taping paper over it, and tracing the lines with a white crayon. After the tracing is done, you paint it with watercolors and the white crayon acts as a wax resist. I think the piece I used for these two paintings was from a line drawing of the bronze ballerina sculpture by Edgar Degas.
The flowing hair on the first one was an accident while painting the color on the face, but I liked it and went with it with the brown. I don't think this painting is as good as it could have been if I'd stopped working on it earlier. I think I "ruined" it in my mind by working on it further. Sometimes you just need to know when to stop!

The second piece I am more satisfied with.

Watercolors aren't usually my favorite artistic medium to work with. If I'm going to paint, I usually prefer acrylic. But I like the look of watercolors and often admire other artists' work done with the medium. My mother-in-law bought me a lovely set of Prismacolor watercolor pencils a few years ago. I use watercolors when I'm trying to "play" with art and let myself combat the perfectionist control-freak that primarily dominates my artistic nature. That part of me often gets frustrated at the transparent nature of watercolors (and prefers the mistake-covering opaqueness of acrylic).

I find it interesting that I tend to paint more during or after I have been teaching art to kids. Most other times painting goes by the wayside while I focus on making plush...because plush is the moneymaker right now. Do you ever wish you could just split yourself? I need a Painter Me, a Plush Maker Me, and a Puppeteer Me. I am interested in so many artistic mediums that it's hard to satisfy the urge for all of them.


M! said...

Those are really pretty! :D Maybe you could learn to paint/dye your own fabric, so you could "watercolour" AND plushie into one big project! :D I should show you some of my yuzen-dyed kimono. I think you'd really love the technique!

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