Saturday, July 23, 2011

Memories from past vacations

Near Monterey, California

Tulum, Mexico
I felt like painting seascapes today, so I picked two old vacation photos. I used only three colors for both - alizarin crimson, prussian blue and indian yellow. They seem like a great trio for landscapes.

Thursday, July 21, 2011


I love weeping willows and some day I will manage to paint them in a way that they don't look like haystacks...

Monday, July 18, 2011

10-minute watercolors

A view in the Rodopi mountains in Bulgaria
Rainy sunset at the lake

I have been reading, and re-reading, the little booklet "10-Minute Watercolors" by Hazel Soan. A real gem! The underlining idea is to learn to simplify your subjects so that you can capture their essence in a very few brushstrokes. Great skill especially for painting en plain air. Not being able to simplify is one of my big problems. Limiting my time makes me plan better and look only at the main and important things in the view. The other trick is using a very limited palette - no more that three colors. This saves time too and also leads to more harmonious colors. I didn't quite fit in the 10 minutes, especially with the first sketch, but I finished it relatively fast and stopped myself from going back and fiddling with little details.
The top one I did with prussian blue, alizarin crimson and yellow ochre; the other one is just prussian blue.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Toronto skyline

Today was one of these very hot and humid days, typical for the summer in Toronto. But the breeze at the lake shore was making a whole lot of difference. We ended up walking for many kilometers along the whole bay undisturbed by the heat. It was a very pleasant walk.
This is a view of the downtown Toronto from Humber Bay Park.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Purple cherries

These are the first cherries I bought this year as finally their price dropped below ten dollars per kilo. Ridiculous prices, I know! Luckily I can live without this fruit. But after seeing Judy’s watercolor of cherries, I wanted to give them a try too – to paint them, that is.

Apparently I  need more reds. The only red I have is the cold quinachridone red, not counting the opaque cadmium. I used also quin. magenta and a violet, that’s why the cherries are so purple. I have to find the time for a trip to the art supply store…

Sunday, July 3, 2011