I just finished framing one of my paintings entitled "Blissful" and I am pretty tickled with it! I have been studying watercolor paintings for over three years and this is not the easiest medium to work with. It does take time to get comfortable with it and I believe I have finally crossed over the line from fear into comfortable!
I will never be a traditional watercolor artist who paints faces or barns or houses. I am definitely more spontaneous than that, I am just allowing the paint to go where it wants to go. I consider my work to be abstract and I love that. I never know what I will get.
I have had the opportunity to study with some pretty wonderful teachers over the years, through structured courses and workshops. I think I prefer the workshop setting more than the classroom setting. In a workshop you get your favorite teacher for two to three days, paint like crazy, fill your notebook with ideas and things you want to remember and off to your homes and studios you go. When I look back at my photos and notes, I learned so much in a very short time.
I have also learned with some wonderful watercolor teachers as well. Each bringing a different approach to the medium and I have been able to learn from all of them. To let you know just how serious I was about learning to paint, I went to my teacher's home, every Friday morning at 8:00 am to be to work at my full time job at 10:00am. I did this routine for months. She would put a lot of effort in the classes for me and I will always be grateful for my watercolor beginnings. Thank you Janet! I then was able to learn from an incredible friend and teacher of mine, Louis Jones, son of Herb Jones. An incredible artist in his own right, he shares his gallery with wife Susan, and son Ryan. What an incredibly talented family that is, and I consider my artistic journey blessed by being able to study with them. I would go on Wednesday evenings, after working a full day and go to the art gallery where classes were being held. There he would teach a technique and we would paint for hours under his direction. If we were lucky enough, he would play his guitar for us while we were painting. I loved the group setting, but at times that can be intimidating, so many artists on different levels! Thank you Louis for your encouragement and direction.
Now I feel as if time in my studio is the best teacher of all. I have learned that you can take the best classes and workshops, travel to learn, buy wonderful art supplies; but if you don't spend time growing with the medium it is worth nothing. I am my best teacher. I know what colors stir me. I know when a painting is worthy of framing and I definitely know what speaks to my creative heart.
I will never be a famous artist, I know that. I paint because it makes me happy. Painting calms me during uncertain times and I love sharing it with others. Watercolor is fun, it is mysterious, it is frustrating, but all in all a beautiful medium. Try it sometime, seek out a teacher, buy some supplies and try your hand at it, you will never regret it. You never know, you might be framing something spectacular.
Hugs and Blessings to you my friends!