So much has been happening since I returned home to the lake. Progress continues to be made on my new studio and now I have made a new course for my online watercolor school. This course is Autumn Leaves. I call it a min-course because it is less than an hour of instruction and costs only $19!
Plus, I am offering a coupon for 20% off this course, as well as my others, until May 1, when you apply the coupon code PAINTATHOME upon checkout.
I've been busy in the very small studio space that I have created for myself. I did another poured watercolor of my watercolor paint tubes. If you follow me on Instagram, you would have seen the photos of each pour. If not, you can see the step-by-step process below. I did 4 pours on this painting. The letters on some of the tubes were too small to try to mask around. So after I pulled off all the mask, I did paint in some of those smaller letters. The colors I uses were Winsor Yellow, Winsor Blue (green shade), and Quinacridone Rose.
This was a quick study from a photo I took while exploring the Columbia National Wildlife Refuge. I wanted to get the brush wet and spend an just an hour playing with the paint. It felt good and discovered what I need to do and not do if I decide to go larger with the painting.
I have always had an affection for dinosaurs and even considered a career as a scientific illustrator of dinosaur bones. While at university in Utah, I spent some time cleaning and caring for dinosaur bones as I pursued my degree in Zoology. Upon graduation, I continued to work with dinosaur bones and taught biology classes at the Natural History Museum of Utah. It was at the museum that I worked with the Utah State paleontologist and discovered that the illustration of dinosaur bones was not for me. Too much math was involved and a move to Boston diverted me from the pursuit. However, I still enjoyed dinosaurs (and still do) and painted a few for fun. In 2003, I was approached by Cogstone Resource Management, a California based company, and asked to create an illustration for their Christmas card. Cogstone is a paleontology company that specializes in the removal of dinosaur bones from construction sites. I, of course, was excited by the idea of painting more dinosaurs. After some sketches, the idea for an illustration of a stegosaurus with poinsettias was conceived. Passion for Poinsettias is the finished illustration.
Maddie and Cameron is another portrait commission I completed in the spring of this little girl holding her newborn baby brother in her arms. I hope it is a moment that I can help her remember and cherish forever.
I finally got around to creating a time-lapse video of the painting process. You can view the video below.
This summer, I was commissioned by some family members to paint a portrait of my Great Aunt Lois, who is my mother's aunt and my grandmother's sister. It was her children that commissioned me to paint the portrait. The portrait was to be done from a black and white photograph of her at the age of 18.
My great aunt is now 93 years old and is still very active. She spends half the year on cruises, sightseeing the world. I was honored that her children asked me to paint a portrait of their mother and of one of my favorite aunts. Of course I wanted to change the photograph by adding color to it. I did want the painting the fade out into a gray, as if the painting were a memory coming to life. I also painted it on handmade paper to help give it a vintage look. I didn't know the color of the dress and was pleased to discover that it was the color I painted it.
I was excited to discover that I would be able to present the painting to her at the family reunion where she proceeded to tell the story behind the photograph.
Lois explained that the photograph was taken just after she had graduated high school from a small town in Southeastern Idaho. This was when many of her friends had enlisted in the navy and had been shipped off to Europe or Japan to fight in the war (WWII). Lois wanted to cheer them up and to remind them of her so she got all dressed up and wore a special bracelet with an anchor on it (unfortunately I did not know this nor was I told about this) just for the photograph. Lois mentioned that she sent the photograph to these boyfriends hoping they would remember her and write her back. She did get one reply back from a farm boy she liked very much. The reply was that the photo reminded him of home and he could smell the country air and the manure when he saw it. Lois said that she never wrote that boy again.