Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Paint & Brushes

What a great way to start June. I enrolled in Tracey Fletcher King's watercolor painting course called Delicious Paint (it started yesterday but I think you can still sign up!) and I'm having so darn much fun it should be illegal, lol. I haven't been happy with my meager art for quite a while and I find myself newly inspired. I found it amazing that last night I was looking in the mirror before bed and these thoughts floated up from my unconscious...

"Hey, you're looking bright eyed and bushy tailed even with an eventful day, cool!"
"I think you look thinner!"

Now, I wasn't really thinner or any super humanly healthier than yesterday but, darn it, I realized I was HAPPY. Where did that come from? Well, painting silly!! Just putting brush to paper and seeing color swish around makes me happy. I'm a better me when I embrace my inner artist. It's who I am and when I lose connection to that part of me I sink into a mild depression. It's kinda like if every day you had a slight fever. You're not really sick like OMG I have the flu sick, but you do feel kinda out of sorts all the time because you're out of balance. 

Well, I seem to have found my balance again, thanks Trace, you're a miracle worker.

fruit & veg drawing (click to enlarge)
So, the first few videos got us all drawing fruits and veggies. I have to admit, I'm a sucker for drawing a good pear so any other fruit/veg, I'm sure, will also ding my bell. You gotta admit, produce is so colorful and wonderfully shaped, it lends itself so beautifully to being interesting art. I'm planning another large drawing because there's just too many good looking veggies out there! I still want to do asparagus, tomatoes, mushrooms, carrots, chilies etc. I have a penchant to go raid a grocery store and borrow a bunch of produce, I'm sure they won't mind, right? I've also been really unreasonable and forced everybody in the house to avoid eating salad because I want to draw the romaine lettuce and roma tomatoes! I know, seriously deranged, right? LOL.

color theory in circles -such an easy way to learn about color interaction.
The next thing I was supposed to do was put color all over a large piece of paper then draw fruit and veg over the paint but instead I did the next homework, color mixing. Don't you think that all those little circles are puuurrrty?? Ya, me too! I discovered something amazing with this assignment too. I discovered how incredible good watercolor brushes are!

For several years I've been using water brushes exclusively in my sketchbooks. For this course Tracey suggested using actual brushes in certain sizes. So, with a good excuse to go shopping, I went and bought some good watercolor brushes in a 2,4,6 and 8 size. I hadn't ever had these sizes and I've also never had good brushes. WOW, they work so incredibly well, I'm shocked. Yes, totally s-h-o-c-k-e-d! They hold a perfect point and hold so much paint that I can't believe I struggled for so long with a water brush. It's been revolutionary and life changing, for serious. The brushes are called Da Vinci 1503 travel brushes (for those of you who drool over art supplies) and I especially love that they're travel brushes. It seemed to make sense to get brushes that not only can be used in the studio but also can be used in Plein Air paintings. I also love that the brush is protected when not in use because you store them in the handle. Anyway, anyone who hasn't tried a good brush instead of a water brush should go shopping for actual brushes, it's revolutionary. I always had trouble with washes, not now!

For those of you who covet art supplies and artist's palettes, here's mine. I have, in the last few days, eliminated the leaf green, green earth, dark brown and quin burnt orange and moved them to a smaller palette I may use occasionally.

Here's my full list of colors in my palette 
(the only colors I didn't use in the color circles above are Neutral Tint and Buff Titanium)
pure yellow (S)
new gamboge (DS)
yellow ochre (S)
sap green (W&N)
viridian (W&N)
cobalt turquoise (S)
prussian green (S)
mountain blue (S)
french ultramarine (DS)
phthalo blue red shade (DS)
Indanthrone blue (PB60) (DS)
transparent orange (S)
permanent red (S)
quin pink (DS)
quin magenta (DS)
carbazole violet (DS)
quin gold (DS)
burnt Sienna (S)
burnt umber (S)
payne's grey blue shade (S)
neutral tint (S)
buff titanium (DS)
(DS=Daniel Smith  S=Schmincke  W&N=Winsor & Newton)

Oh, and here's some interesting information. There's an art supplies giveaway going on at Sketchbook Skool to celebrate the beginning of "Storytelling" on June 5th. Go here and you can enter to win some cool stuff and you can also learn about Sketchbook Skool and all the courses they offer.


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  1. I just wrote a huge comment and then lost it Jenn, don't you just hate that when it happens. Here's an edited version if I can remember what I wrote.
    Fantastic veggies... I want more. How can that be? Do not underestimate the power of Tracey.
    Your brushes look and sound great. I've just bought supplies and now have a thin purse (fat tummy but you can't have everything.
    You're looking good and the mirror doesn't lie. I'm so happy to hear you're feeling more centred and inspired once more.
    Carry on and I'll see you in class.

  2. I am only just catching up on posts and have to say I should have checked this earlier and could have given you exact colours to use when and where... But then I thought it is good you have had to try it yourself... So much better to get you in there playing with your colours and learning what works with what... It is half the fun and I don't want to deprive you of that!


Please leave me a comment, I've sure missed hearing from you!


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