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January 25, 2012

100 Watercolors #24 - No Time

Some of you might recognize this week's illustration.  It is a repainting of a self-portrait I drew for the 2008 Blog Archive page on my personal website.  Each year I try to come up with one image that sums up the big events going on in my life.  At that time I had just begun freelancing, which was very stressful!  So it seemed like a good image for this theme.  Appropriately, I got to paint this version of the image during another extremely busy time in my life.  It's always therapeutic to draw how you feel, right? 

Previously I was mixing my colors on a piece of scrap paper and then applying them to the painting.  I'm not sure why that was my method...  Usually I would run out of the color, and have to remix it, which was always a bit different.  Lately I have been mixing my colors in a plastic palette, which is working much better.  I can mix up a bunch of a color, so I make sure I have enough to cover an area.  Also, when I'm mixing another similar color, I can do it right on top of an old one, so I collect some of the previous color, which helps unify the color scheme (hopefully) and leads to more unique color choices.  It's a small (probably obvious) step, but I feel like it's making a big difference in these paintings.  I've got another 76 of these to go, so hopefully I can discover some more good tips along the way!

Next week: Trouble Lurking!

January 18, 2012

100 Watercolors #23 - Cat

I have never been much of a cat person, so when I had to sketch out ideas for this theme, most of what I came up with was pretty negative.  I know there are tons of super-enthusiastic cat people on the internet, and I feared that perhaps even you, dear reader, loved cats.  So I dug a little deeper, and came up with this image:

Personally, I find it kind of terrifying that cats wander around killing small animals and then bring them back to you as a sign of affection.  So for me, this image is totally creepy, but I'm hoping that it will also be totally endearing to cat-lovers.  Eh?!  Maybe?  Hmmm....

In other watercolor news, I received a huge burst of inspiration this week, as Scott C's new book East Dragon, West Dragon arrived in the mail!

Not only is Scott one of my favorite illustrators working today, but the watercolors are beautiful, his character designs are unparalleled and it's full of DRAGONS, so what's not to love?  He's got some samples from the book over on his site, so check them out and order this book.  You won't regret it.

Next week's theme: No Time!

January 11, 2012

100 Watercolors #22 - Mother Nature

Boy oh boy I had a blast painting this week's theme.  Watercolors are perfectly suited for a big rainy scene and I had a lot of fun laying down colors quick and loose and then adding in lots of additional sloppy layers of color.  This is the second of my 100 watercolors to have rain in it (and a bit more successful than the first, I think).  Perhaps I can think up a few more, before the end of the series.  I sure do love the rain...  (Can you tell that I was raised in Seattle, or what?)

Next week's theme: Cat!

January 4, 2012

100 Watercolors #21 - Vacation

Well, after a two-month hiatus, I'm back working on my 100 Watercolors project.  I had a lot of fun painting this one.  I feel like I am getting a better handle on mixing colors and applying them in a consistent manner.

My only regret on this one was not digging a little deeper for my reference.  I was in some sort of rush the day I drew the final, so I grabbed the first image that came up for "tourists" on Google Image Search.  Generally I think this is a bad idea, but that Duane Hanson sculpture is so dead on, I decided to use it anyway.  At least I changed the colors around a bit.

Next week's theme: Mother Nature!