Zen Stroll: Watercolor Tree Inspirations

forest stroll zen meditation, nature inspirations, watercolor lessons, debiriley.com

Can we lower blood pressure in under 5 minutes?  A soft smile upon our faces?

And, can we  be Ready for the day? 

Calm morning strolls, no matter how short, are perfect.  Perfect for refreshing, for inspiring.

For gaining new insights.


forest stroll zen meditation, nature inspirations, watercolor lessons, debiriley.com
Zen Stroll –  so inspiring

The Zen Strolls

My Zen Strolls began a few years ago, with the instructions “get some exercise.”

The idea was for me to jog or something like that.

The traditional idea of exercise.


I thought I’d walk. Cheap, handy, etc.


An incentive.

I needed a reward.

So I took my camera, thus my “prescribed” program of exercise morphed into a meditational zen stroll.

Something I enjoy.

Look forward to. And will do as often as I can.


I had to look at this exercise thing a little differently, than the standard way of thinking about it.

With new fresh eyes.

No. I do not actually do aerobic exercise. At all.

But, my blood pressure is lower. Enjoyment is higher. And some days,  I end up walking 2 hours.

Works for me.




The Difficult Questions


Approach it all, with a New Innocence.


Whatever it is, whether its ‘exercise’  or if its Art.


Those ….. ingrained traditions.

Those old accepted beliefs.


Question them.



Why do we need to skimp on paint?

Why do we need to use Just Beginner quality products?

Why do we need to paint tiny, shrinking inwards, rather than Bold & Outwards!?

Why do we need to parrot the exact scene, line for line, word for word, without expressing our own selves?



Do you pause, and wonder about

HOW are these actions, serving us, in the  Long Term?


These are the hard questions, we need to ask of ourselves, in order for the doors of creativity to fully open.




Good Advice


“What purpose is this thought or action serving?”

This was what one of my professors, demanded of me, in the nicest way possible.



It stopped me, in my tracks.

And made me think.


She was a great one for doing her own thing, her way.

And making certain that others found their own voice.

It was years ago, and I’ve not forgotten her words.




zen nature stroll, meditational walk, reflecting in nature, debiriley.com
stillness and serenity   –  a zen stroll



Art is Feeling

I explore in many posts, ideas about feelings, thoughts and emotions in this Art website.

Not just the mechanics, the step by step techniques.

Basics are good, needed, but without the spirit and imagination to spur us on, we falter.


One can not divide the two…. Art and Feelings.


The artist’s feelings, emotions, are what breathes Life into the art work.

Without that vulnerability, ‘risk’ taking,  the resulting product is bland and flat.

Its an empty product without taste, not many would be interested in tasting.


rough bark photograph, canon eos, debi riley art, art basics
Bark    Rough,  but soft in the back.  how it looks, feels




I’m working on some watercolor color charts.

watercolor mixing chart, landscape colors, debiriley.com
Palette  I   for Tree  Bark


Plus, a  quick tree or two… these will go into Part 2 of Zen Strolls, my upcoming next post.






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 society6.com/debiriley and, redbubble.com/people/debijriley/shop

10 thoughts on “Zen Stroll: Watercolor Tree Inspirations

  1. Sound advice as always Debi – we must all remember to use that all important little word “WHY?” much, much more… ! Love the images – lots of lovely blues and greens in them leaping out at me! And I love your colour chart – I do quite a lot of them, I find them very useful for learning about colour and pigment properties…


    1. thank YOU! once in awhile, I get a student. who is all about WHY. a blessing – because then the whole group benefits from the info. but also, this then takes me, into unplanned – tangents. off grid. OH DEAR! lol Thank you Evelyn, running over to your place now! cheers, debi

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a fantastic post, my friend and I wholeheartedly agree with every point! I try to inspire this feeling in others, but often, I find myself a bit stuck on the same tried and true path. Emotion in the words, but the image is a little flat. Time to take a stroll down paths uncharted, methinks. Thanks for all you do to inform and inspire!! 💕😃


    1. you DO Inspire us, Charlie!!! and yes, your words…. so much is conveyed in what you write, How, you write. We can feel it almost as if you were standing next to us, at times. that too, is art. and a rare, gift. Smiling at your comment on uncharted paths. They are Fun! its art, Where… else in life can we so totally let go, and run down such uncharted paths – safely? in real life, we might run into real trouble, lol


  3. Awesome read, dear Debi! And I agree. When ever I get too ambitious (what is really terrible for creating good´n easy watercolors) I go out for a stroll. Then I get my watercolor sketchbook and paint something relaxing and I am okay again with the world and myself. I try to walk every morning after my nightshift, no matter what weather and it is good to lower my blood pressure… great for a good sleep… and inspiring. Most of the time I forget to take my camera with me… but I have eyes… and memory. And only with this relaxed feeling transported to the painting process I can create something beautiful. It does not happen very often.. but more often with this pracice in being relaxed.


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