Petals of color

watercolor impressionist flower, pink and purple flower abstract painting,

So sweet, so velvety these petals you almost want to kiss.

So tempting those soft petals of a flower.


Do you wonder, how to create flowers or trees,  or clouds as they thunder in from the south?

Do you wonder What colors, did the artist use?

What paper? What technique?  What was their magic recipe?

What is the artist’s secret?




watercolor impressionist flower, pink and purple flower abstract painting,
soft petals watercolors


My Watercolor Secrets

The watercolor brush softly kisses the paper in its magical dance with color.



I’ll tell you the mechanics.

I’ll tell you the colors.

I’ll tell you the paper and brush.


But honestly.

Its always The Spirit in the piece that makes it much of anything.



Because its  IF,  the artist   was able to convey the life force energy they saw and they felt,

that determines whether the painting has the magic spark or not.




flower in the light, macro floral, canon rebel,



Did you know, that painters,  are like singers… in a way.



We aim for many of the same things.

To touch the audience, to make the viewers sense the same emotions that stirred in us.


Above all, we don’t want to leave them untouched, unmoved.



Barriers get in the way,  they will prevent connection from happening.

What do I mean?

What ‘barriers?’


For artists the primary barrier is nerves, stress, fear.

Which erects gates and doors and walls that are very effective blocks and barriers.



A singer who is stressed, can’t fully engage, open up and be  vulnerable.

It is a shut door.  A wall.  A barrier.

These don’t allow the audience  to come in, to share the authentic emotion the singer has.




So too, the painter.

Under stress, fearing failure,

its ‘not quite right’,

‘imperfections’  and not good “enough”   the artist can’t fully open up either.

The audience loses out.



We the audience,

don’t like walls or barriers

between us, and our artists.



We want to see, to hear our singers sing with  passion, vulnerability, openness and authenticity.

No Walls.  No barriers.


And we  want our painters to let loose,

to fully express their own voices through their art as well.





inspirational flowers, zen strolls, purple woodsflowers,
Inspiring Woods flower



Process and the Materials

I painted direct, no drawing, on dry Arches Rough 300gsm paper.

The Rekab 320s #2 was my sole brush used.

Limiting the colors made the painting smoother, easier.

4 Paints: permanent rose, winsor lemon, cerulean with a tiny bit of indigo   into the flower center



Process Steps

Painting from the background progressing to the middleground the last the foreground and the focal point.

I planned to make sure the background was appropriate: cooler colors, paler tones, more subtle.

With the foreground much stronger, more contrasts, warmer & more vibrant – to clearly state, “This, is The front.”


Planning in my mind, the leaving of adequate WHITE Space for balance.

As I painted, I kept quizzing myself, “do I have sufficient range of tonal values?”

The area of the deepest Dark, and the Whitest light  ie  where there is The most tonal contrast… Is the focal point


I used some splatter at the end, most of the work was done in washes & charging technique.





Most of the time painting, I was remembering… my walk in the woods.

The Feeling I had, while there.

The lovely zen stroll amidst these serene and sweet petalled flowers.


Thats  My secret.





Published by debiriley

The act of creation, in any media is a fascinating and magical process. I simply love to create. Expressing in color, line, tone, texture - as if, they were words upon a page. Creating a uniquely me, interpretation. Enjoy More of my "one-of-a-kind" expressive art at and,

18 thoughts on “Petals of color

    1. thank you Karen, that is wonderful and I’m happy you enjoyed this. Many times, as with this post, I’m either working something out… or, hoping students in my art classes will read the post and ‘See’ our week’s topic right there. 🙂 I appreciate your thoughtful comments! cheers, Debi

      Liked by 1 person

    1. hi Mary! great to ‘see’ you!! thank you, I always appreciate your comments. You’re very kind, and thoughtful 🙂 cheers, Debi


  1. I always like your blogs , very creative and thoughtful . On your comments about barriers as an artist I would like to find an audience to see what I do. It’s true many things can cause discouragement . I get down many times but I always pop back up and try again !

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you Andy, that is wonderful to know you are enjoying the posts and getting something from what I’ve written! good for you to be able to resurrect your joy and enthusiasm; that is, what it takes imo cheers! debi


  2. I so love what you wrote about the spirit of the piece that makes the difference. So often I feel something I can’t say, and when a painting begins to work I am able to paint what I can’t verbalise. When it takes flight though is when others can find that something too. I am no longer alone in my heart of hearts.


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