Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Herons, Herons, and More Herons

First I want to post the link to the Fallbrook Art Center's Signature American Watermedia Exhibit. I am so honored to have a painting in this show. If you scroll down, you will find the online catalog, where my "Blue Moon Heron" is shown among many wonderful paintings.


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But my journey with my heron totem on the rivers of the Northwest is far from over. In the last few days I've worked on a new piece, this time putting two herons in the top of a pine tree. I used the same method in painting this as I did in "Blue Moon Heron," however, in this new piece the watercolor paper was covered with a metallic gold gesso, rather than beige gesso, before I applied the opaque watercolors (gouache.)

Here is the beginning of the new piece. Covering a 22 x 22 inch piece of paper with paint, can seem somewhat daunting. But I kept at it, not feeling very confident that I would end up with a decent painting. I kept reminding myself that it is always a learning process. In "Blue Moon Heron" I had totally wiped it clean after my first attempt, yet persevered  with the painting until I ended up with something very successful. What this takes is fearlessness and acceptance of the unknown.

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I had struggled with dominating the paint in "Blue Moon Heron." I worked on making smooth and consistent areas. The difference this week, was that I started to appreciate what the paint wants to do, which is puddle and run and look quite messy. Instead of fighting it, I went with it. I accentuated the very interesting textured areas, allowing the puddling to create an aged effect that I started liking more and more. 

So here is "Taken Under the Wing."  I'm interested in all your thoughts and comments.

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Taken Under the Wing
20" x 20"


Anonymous said...

Do NOT give up on this painting!! It is another winner. How would you feel about more dark at the bottom...i.e. a band woven in through the foliage?


Ruth Armitage said...

Hi Margaret,
I'm loving the oozles and textures that painting on this surface gets you. Another way to add to your pattern/texture arsenal.