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Friday, December 2, 2011
Great Egret #1
I’ll be the first to admit when I finished my first 100 Paintings challenge about a year ago I savored what I had accomplished and heaved a sigh of relief that it was over. I made it all the way! Only later did it sink in how much I had learned during the challenge. One of the most important insights was the importance of experimenting and enjoying. Also, much to my surprise, I had discovered I could have meaningful interactions with other artists via the internet. I enjoyed watching others grow … and I enjoyed the encouragement and sharing my work with others.
Now, to change the subject: Right here, at the beginning, I’m going to be a little bit wordy and comment on why I want to include a focus on paper as part of my challenge. In years past, when I was painting professionally, I almost always painted very detailed work: watercolor on illustration board; acrylic on masonite. My style was very realistic. Now I want to be more artistic.
Mostly I’m a bit frugal when it comes to my art supplies. On my first round of The 100 Paintings Challenge I started out mostly experimenting on three of relatively inexpensive papers and virtually all the paint came out of an ancient tin box of pan watercolors. Then I happened to find a tablet put out by Strathmore featuring a variety of their good watercolor papers. I started having fun with it; and mentioned it to a fellow artist who I know from Yellowstone. Judy surprised me with samples of several more brands. Wow! By now it was dawning on me that papers vary a lot …. And that means the results we get varies a lot. I don’t plan to try every paper in the store, but I do plan to use a variety of papers and let you know what surface I’m working on for each painting. Some of it will still be on my old standbys -- I want to try a variety of art on different surfaces. Most of my paintings will be watercolor or pen and ink plus watercolor. By the end of this challenge I hope to have a good understanding of which paper I want to grab for different types of paintings. I’m hoping it’ll be a relatively short list that I settle on.