2021 in review: Watercolor

I’ve been painting with watercolors since this summer. I fell from my bike, injured my ankle, and I couldn’t ride for about 6 weeks, so I had to find something else that lets me get out of my house.

I eventually settled into a routine of sort. Small 5.5″x8.5″ paper. My daughter’s left over watercolor paint set. The whole thing is neatly packed in a bag so that I can take it outside with me, though as the weather got colder and I started riding again, I’m mostly doing this in the house. It only takes 30 minutes to 2 hours to finish a piece.

In the 7 months since I started, I painted some 50 or so pieces. That’s something, isn’t it.

I slowly stared developing some basic techniques. I did a few pieces using just one color to practice those techniques. I discovered that some color combinations do not go well, and so I switched from watercolor pencils, which is where I started, to watercolor paints proper. One day I painted a few trees and that got me into learning how to paint trees better. Another day, I found the green that came with the paint set didn’t look natural, that sent me down a different rabbit hole to learn to mix colors. I discovered that too much details is not good. The journey goes on, like that. I don’t know where this journey will lead me to, which is exciting.

Every piece feels like a little journey, on its own, too. I start with some idea of where I want to go with a piece, and I always come out somewhere else unanticipated. I look at the piece and that usually gives me some new ideas, or some questions, which leads me to the next piece.

I’ve done this enough that I now get truly blown away with what real artists can do with watercolors. One needs to give it a serious enough effort to see just how hard it is to control water and colors on paper, and how slow the progress is. That gives you a whole new level of appreciation when you see what pros can do.

You can see all of my work on Flickr:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.