Saturday, January 18, 2014

Brush Confidence

Today's blog was originally written in 2009. Reentering my studio in October of 2013 for the first time as a full time artist after life's ups & downs I found  that rereading some of my own advice was more timely and helpful than I thought or  would ever need. Our past blogs remind us where we have been and help keep us focused on our journey.
Risky Business 2009
My natural palette is blue/brown . My usual expression relies on applied textures. Vermilion Skies was painted to challenge these habits. Surprised by the outcome,encouraged by its quick sale,I continue to grow and learn as an artist when willing to set aside that which I already know and take a risk.
I've been teaching more and more lately. I find my biggest challenge is not in teaching art principles but confidence...specifically brush confidence. I first heard reference to such a concept from Barry John Raybould. Struck by the phrase, I wondered if it applied to watercolors . It was obvious in oils and acrylics by nature of their textured and weighted stroke, but watercolor?
Yes ! Brush confidence goes beyond mere application of paint .
Large brushes used with energy, stroke broadly across a surface giving a flow of direction. Flat edged and razor- like swoops of color skitter, dry against dry and meet strokes melting wet into wet.Working large to small, building on broad shapes rather than line contour, most importantly keeping the forms simple I challenged myself to ... brush it on ..and walk away! sold

10 comments:

HammelmanArt said...

And you self-challenge was a great success!

storybeader said...

this is truly beautiful. Congrats on the sale.

Mark Alan Meader said...

Very nice... your work is loose but the result is tight and very pleasing. I'd say the bold approach definitely pays off. I like to work spontaneously myself.. I guess that's why I love watercolors.

Helen Harris said...

Thanks to all for the comments. I think the hardest part of this piece ..was walking away.Most of my work has collage elements. This time it just didn't feel right to work in that style.I always teach mixed media workshops that anything added to a painting must act in an integrated manner ..not just decoration.

Sharkbytes said...

I really love that painting. The sky and water just work together.

Nancy Van Blaricom said...

Lovely. Nice confident work.

Ronnie said...

Beautiful, Helen. Not surprised it sold so quickly! Thanks for your wisdom.

Kathleen said...

Beautifully executed!

Haslina said...

beautiful painting..love the colours

Joe Hagarty said...

I love the paintings and your information about yourself and painting.