Return to Basics – Simplicity

watercolor techniques, painting Christmas trees, back to basics watercolor beginners,

Watercolors.  Back to Basics.

Simplicity…..   I like it.

Its about the basics.

Trying to express with the brush, what you see and ‘feel.’



watercolor techniques, painting Christmas trees, back to basics watercolor beginners,
Simplicity … it can be,   complicated



A watercolor Christmas holiday tree, kept nice and easy.

Not with all the hoopla, and dizzying busy-ness that makes our heads spin.


This was deliberate.

Created with simplicity in mind.


Done with  the specific targeted goal  of trying to paint  “simplicity.”

And then hoping,  that feeling of Simplicity,  might follow me around elsewhere.

Even if, it was just the rest of the day. Or week.





Creative Watercolor Zone


My mind was in the creative zone.

I shut off everything else.


This painting….

it didn’t take long.

I didn’t need to devote precious,  Time.

All I spent in total, was 5 minutes.


The brush danced along and I had fun watching it move.

Yes… I know,

I was holding the brush.


But I was really, only gently directing its pathways.

I wasn’t forcing it or ‘making it’  go anywhere.


There was no rigid tight control freak in charge….today.  I’m not, perfect!



It is this part of The Art Basics, that often gets left out of art classes.

The Partnership.

The one-ness between you and the brush, the paints, the papers, ie your materials.


And its this Partnership that enables you, to master Simplicity.





You might like to view Tony Smibert’s art images at  

He is a current, internationally known artist who most certainly,

has mastered the art of Simplicity.


Magic happens in so few, beautiful brush strokes.

Tony works in both watercolors and abstracts, and acrylic on canvas.











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,

24 thoughts on “Return to Basics – Simplicity

    1. thank you Amy. I’ve had to sneak away for several mini zen walks- its getting a bit nuts out there. I’d love for us all to strip it back to basics – and Simply, enjoy the holidays! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I really do my best to try to avoid the craziness that is out there this time of year. When will people ever get it through their thick skulls that all this rushing and buying and this insanity just put them right into the ground? We do not rush nor do we buy but we just celebrate Christmas quietly at home with a good dinner and hopefully a good movie. Christmas is all about Love yet people have quite forgotten that. How sad

        Liked by 1 person

      2. yes. quiet and peaceful sounds great. our tree is up. but, not one “gift” purchased. I’m rethinking this whole strategy. yet, the grandchildren, need to be considered. maybe an ‘experience’ vs …. toys.
        So many in society have, bought off on the surface appearance; forgoing the inner depths. WHAT do we DO!? 🙂 smiling! peaceful serene joy for you this season – cheers, debi

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I love the simplicity in this Debi. Simplicity appeals to me very much – it’s so easy to over complicate, over work a watercolour. For me especially, understanding and mastering the basics of watercolour (including simplicity) is very important before moving on to more complex compositions….


  2. I adore simplicity and I could almost “feel” your tree, the essence and breath of a painting is far better than a buffet of all sorts of “too much”. Yep, simplicity, the quiet moments of a painting. I have Tony Smibert’s book and it is one of my favorites. Have you ever looked at the paintings of Chiura Obata? the economy of his brushstrokes are superb. Have a wonderful weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Interesting info on his woodblocks. They were originally watercolors and he enlisted Japanese woodblock artists to translate them to woodblock prints. I read a book about him last year and it went into detail about the process. He threw hundreds away that did not meet his criteria.

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      2. that would be exciting to do with some of mine, turn into prints… I really would like about 4 clones, I bet you would too Margaret!! lol have a wonderfully enchanting peaceful lovely Christmas!

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  3. When I did more painting, I always liked doing trees because they were so easy to do. A few brush strokes and a tree would magically appear. I love the simplicity of your tree. It tells me there’s snow (because it is all on white) and it has that Christmassy look. Very nice.

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