Friday, November 21, 2014


Watercolor - 11x15

Flowers in the Wind is a great example of using negative painting in watercolor. I first painted a wet on wet background using bright colors of yellow, orange, blue and purple. When it was dry I sketched the flowers and leaves and then painted the background (negative space) in a dark color and then added a few details to the flowers. 

These colorful flowers now live in California - thanks Lynne!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Set Your Inner Artist Free

Watercolor - 11x15

I have taught watercolor classes for over fifteen years now and have loved every minute of it. Many of my new students arrive to class with a fear of the creative unknown and a lack of confidence in their abilities but with a strong desire to explore their inner artist.

It is sometimes easier to hold back from creating and give in to our self doubt but we need to stop the negative self-talk and open ourselves up to creative possibilities. Draw, paint, play, experiment - jump in and be willing to make mistakes. Face your fears and create with courage and I guarantee the artistic rewards will be worth it.

I believe that art warms the heart, feeds the soul and adds joy to your life. It is all about the creative journey and artistic discoveries along the way, not just the final destination!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Calla Lilies and Music

Watercolor Collage - 11x15

I love to combine different mediums with watercolor and collage is a great way to add texture and design interest to a composition. I used a rubber stamp that had music on it, painted it with some watercolor and then stamped it on very thin rice paper.
You can see in this detail photo where I used matted medium to collage the stamped rice paper onto the watercolor painting. I love the look of the white fibers and the imperfection of the stamped musical notes!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Grapes and Wine Tasting

Watercolor - 8x10

On our recent trip to visit our oldest daughter Laura and her husband Eric we visited some wineries in North Carolina. They varied from small family run operations to this large Tuscan style building where weddings and conferences are held.
The countryside and vineyards were beautiful, the fall weather mild and the wine tasting delicious!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Family, Wine and Beautiful Scenery

Watercolor Batik - 12x19

Desert Beauty has a new home with Elaine in Virginia. Todd and I were just back in that part of the country visiting our daughter Laura and her husband Eric. 
We toured some of the wineries in beautiful North Carolina. This pretty spot was near the Elkin Creek Winery - my favorite by far!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Fall Leaves and November Art Newsletter

Watercolor - 11x15

The focus of our weekly classes in October was Autumn and we did our annual leaf painting, using real leaves to stamp images on the paper as a starting point for a composition. I used non-typical fall colors of purple, turquoise and burnt sienna.
For more art news, paintings and tips you can view my November Newsletter here

Friday, November 7, 2014

A Vignette With a Cat and a Little Coffee

Watercolor - 11x15

A vignette is a painting designed so it has a painted edge that fades into the white of the paper and uses the paper to create a border around the composition. (Rather than the one painted right up to all four edges of a sheet of paper or frame.) The shape of the edge is part of the composition and is most commonly broken (rough) or oval shaped.
I began this watercolor with wet paper and applied shades of blue and yellow ochre making sure I left areas of white paper at the bottom to create a vignette composition. This is one of my favorite ways to paint in a loose style and take advantage of the pure, white paper. i also sprinkled instant coffee in the wet paint for added texture and interest.