Tag: imagine and create

Cobalt Teal Blue: Stages of Art

Cobalt Teal Blue: Stages of Art

 

“We arrive totally new

at the various stages of life and

there we often lack experience

despite the number of our years.”

Francoise de La Rochefoucauld VI  1613  French writer

 

cobalt teal blue abstract, la rochefoucauld quote, debiriley.com
Stage One  Cobalt Teal Blue Abstract

 

In Stages

I think his quote sums up our experience with painting, art, as well.

 

Every time we think we attain a new level, get to the next stage, we discover ourselves beginners all over again.

 

Beginners don’t realise that this is ‘just what happens.’

Often as Beginners, we believe the journey will be smooth sailing, once we learn the basics.

That the there won’t be much more mystery, or challenges, or setbacks after that.

 

 

Those who have been at it longer, know differently.  Know the drill.

Because, as long as our innate artistic curiosity remains,  there will be challenges.

 

We have been down the path enough times before not to be overly discouraged.

 

We know…. to wait it out.

To work it out.

abstract blues, cobalt teal blue painting, debiriley.com
Stage Two

 

 

La Rochefoucauld

I chose La Rochefoucauld to quote from today, for two reasons.

The quote content suited the post and image, firstly.

 

Secondly, he isn’t one of the most well known writers people have read about.

But, he has so many quotes, maxims that are valuable gems.

Just as applicable in 2018 as they were in the 1600’s.

 

And Art, is about discoveries.

About curiosity that is never ending.

 

 

reference for painting abstract of water, debiriley.com
original reference photo

 

The springboard, the origins of the painting came from the photo of water in green blue.

Not really a magnificent specimen on its own.

However, it does not need to be.

 

The reference sources only need to Inspire.

To ignite within the artist a desire to create something more, something going Beyond that initial photo.

 

 

Abstract Art

As an abstract, it need not Be anything.

It doesn’t have to represent a boat, house, flower, lake, ocean, etc.

Its non-representational.

 

abstract expressionism, acrylic painting on canvas, debiriley.com
The Pond,  Abstract 

 

If,  a painting was Semi-Abstract then,  we would be able to discern perhaps that an area might be a sky shape.

Another shape, could infer a shrouded figure, or a boat out upon misty waters.  This, is what a Semi Abstract painting is.

 

Lunar Black, Quincacridone Sienna, Daniel Smith watercolors, debiriley.com
Smoke and Fire  – semi abstraction

 

Impressionist, we can detect straight away that something is a flower, a tree, car, cup, etc.

Maybe not, the exact precise street address of the place.

More the mood and feeling of the place or person though.

Autumn Color watercolor landscape, how to fix a watercolor painting, fall tree colors, debiriley.com
moods of autumn watercolor & pastel landscape:  Society6 shop

 

Botanical art is very precise.  We will know what type of flower it is, the species, etc.

The measurements, the ratios, will all be correct.

Everything leaves, petals, stamens, roots, etc. will be exact in their detail.

 

 

 

Abstract cobalt teal #9 

Abstract art  – A Definition 

Cobalt Teal Sea Sirens 

 

 

 

 

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Watercolor Skies in Ultramarine, Cobalt Violet

Watercolor Skies in Ultramarine, Cobalt Violet

Wet in wet watercolors. Perfect beginners’ techniques to loosen up!

Let the paints, do their thing.  and You…. Allow,  accidents to happen.

 

 

watercolor skies, cobalt violet, wet in wet techniques, luminosity in watercolor landscapes, debiriley.com
watercolor’s horizons

 

Wet in Wet Technique

WHY I love showing and sharing the Wet in Wet Technique:

 

  • creates soft beautiful edges
  • its great for Depth, and backgrounds
  • helps to teach us about tonal values
  • we learn about color mixing, mud avoidance
  • helps us to loosen up, to lose the tight rigidity
  • fabulous process for creating a series of skies

 

 

Materials Used

 

Paints

Ultramarine Blue

2  Cobalt Violet

Both belong to the Granulating Category; creating sensational moody, atmospheric textures with their dense particles sinking into the deep hollows of the paper fabric.

By holding back, limiting my palette to two colors, I can be more confident that I won’t get mud.

That I will successfully get better tonal value ranges.

That the overall unity will be Great!

 

Paper

Arches Rough 100% cotton rag watercolor paper

Please note, this paper was  ‘pre-used.’

I’d previously painted on it.  However,  I didn’t care for it and so rinsed it off until nearly all color was gone.

You will still see remnants.

Ghost marks upon the page… I don’t mind these so called imperfections. 

 

 

Brush

Rekab #2 320s  squirrel mop brush

 

 

I chose Cobalt Violet to complement Ultramarine. It would soften the sky,  the cloud shadows.

It would create a sense of mood and atmosphere into the water to deepen the feeling of the painting.

It would help me, to communicate … More.

 

I paid particular attention, to making certain that I did not cover up all my white paper.

Especially in the areas that would help to guide the viewer’s eyes Inwards.

 

I jotted notes down to myself, ‘leave whites.’ 

Little post’its on my table, in front of my eyes, as I painted.

 

 

Writing notes,  giving myself  clear, sequential, Basic Instructions…. comes in very handy.

Because,  sometimes as I get to painting  – I get so enthused I forget things in my exuberance.

Perhaps, you do this too?

 

 

My Process of Working….

When I was doing this image, I set about it, like most of my other works.

 

I lined up about 7 -9 sheets of watercolor paper.  They are there, ready.

Waiting.

 

I need, to do this.

Or else I will over work, spend all my exuberant energies on the one image.

That is too much.

Too much color for just one paper.

Too many brush strokes, too much action, too much ‘energy’ for just one image.

It needs spreading out on several.

 

At what point, do I Move On?

When the paint on image #1 is at the ‘cranky’ pants stage (not dry enough, not wet enough)  to successfully accept more paint.

I move onto paper #2 and begin the next Technique.

 

Normally, I will do about 7, but there are times its less or much more.  With varying levels of ‘beauty.’

I save my ‘judging’ for the next day. Its a better idea I’ve learned.

 

 

And what did the other 7 techniques I did, look like?

 

Wretched, I say!!

But, of course, they are “resolvable.”

 

 

So, its alright, I’m good.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A New Innocence

A New Innocence

The Sleepwalkers.

Its an old book, really old, 1959.

Yet, I find it immensely compelling.

The author, Arthur Koestler.   Who? …. nope, never heard of him.

That’s alright, neither had I.  But, just read this:

 

“Every Creative Act involves

a new innocence

of perception

liberated from

the cataract of

accepted belief.”

Arthur Koestler,    The Sleepwalkers  

 

 

 

arthur koestler quote from The Sleepwalkers, a new innocence, every creative act, debiriley.com
new innocence

A New Innocence in the way we see….

 

I’m reading Julia Cameron, The Artists Way  and Betty Edwards book, Drawing on the Right Side of The Brain.

Switching it up, and comparing both of their insights on drawing, on art, on filling lives with Creativity.

 

And that’s how I stumbled upon Koestler’s words, in Betty Edwards’ book.

 

 

I think, its fairly irrelevant the type of art, the type of Creative act we do, it could be writing, dancing, singing, but his message is true for all.

We need to let go the old, “thats the way its been done”  belief system.

And come to the studio with Innocence.

 

What Koestler is saying, I believe is this.

We do not have to rely upon what we were told to do years ago, just because.  Just because is never,  a valid reason.

Neither is, because its easier for me to deal with it done this way, so you need to learn to do it like this.

 

 

 

Arthur Koestler book

This quote of his has replayed in my mind for weeks.

Until I set about doing a bit of research.

And this week, went to Amazon to buy his book.

I haven’t begun to even scratch its surface.

But I’m excited to keep reading more.

 

The Sleepwalkers: A History of Man’s  Changing Vision  of the Universe   at Amazon.

 

 

 

With a New Innocence,

of perception.

yes, I do like the sound of that!

 

The World of Watercolor: Loose And Free!

The World of Watercolor: Loose And Free!

Do you love watercolor?  Love its translucency, its soft melting edges?

Love Colors that seemingly flow together to create something that the hand, the brush could not quite have dobbed or dabbed into being?

I do.

 

watercolor techniques loose and free, beginners fun painting, debiriley.com
world of watercolor loose and free

 

Impressionist watercolor flowers, bright colored flower painting, debiriley.com
Loose Colorful  Patio Flowers

Watercolor Loose and Free

Freedom of Expression

What purpose such looseness and freedom serve, we may wonder.

Wouldn’t crisp, tight, defined, “control” over the entire process be much better?

Maybe. Or maybe not.

Wouldn’t it better … “to bend; not break?”

 

My privilege as a teacher, while adhering to the described course title, theme topic,  is to overview the group’s needs and then tailor the agenda to that.

Diversity within the group, of course means we will all take in the skills, the information at varying rates, the different things presented.

Its just like here, in these posts.  At different times, we will be ready. For new information.

 

I liked the concept of Loose and Easy, as I believe its one of the most effective ways to  become confident and successful with watercolors.

 

Scary at first, yes,  I do remember being a ‘beginner.’

But we ease in. Bit by bit we let go.

Step by step we open the doors.

 

watercolors, bright colors of natures, wet in wet watercolor technique, debiriley.com
Glorious Colors

 

Ways… to let go

Trying any of these, better still – making up your own ways, is a step towards free & loose expression in art.

 

Ultramarine acts as a dark anchor while Lemon blends with Cobalt Teal blue as they fall together.

The explosion of shapes created with Cadmium Scarlet eased into Indanthrone blue, Prussian blue.

Or maybe the sedimentation and speckling patterns made by mixing Lunar Black with Quinacridone Sienna.

Cobalt Teal blue finding its way downwards, as gravity controls its descent in a lovely scene, reflections along the water.

 

creativity includes cropping an image, debiriley.com
Cadmium Scarlet on Blue

 

 

 

There is a time and place for all types, all styles, genres of painting approaches.

Botanical, Impressionist, Surrealism, Illustrative, Cubist, PhotoRealism, etc.

 

bright bird of paradise greeting cards, debi riley art, flower cards for Mothers day, Society 6, debiriley.com
Bird of Paradise Greeting Cards

 

Each artist, will have their own unique personality.

With specific preferences.

 

These preferences,   evolve with time.

Our tastes, change, as we gain more experience.

 

As we gain confidence, step by step, we put our ‘stamp’ upon the things we do.

Just like our clothing, our home decor, our landscaping, our favorite cooking recipes.

And this, is exactly what we are aiming for!

 

 

zen of colour: forest in cobalt teal blue pg50, debiriley.com
‘Zen in the Forest,’    …. a loose interpretative approach

 

 

 

Tips & ‘Guide Posts’  to Painting Loose!

For us to be able to paint and create Loose and Free,  there are some helpful ideas that make it easier for us.

These guide posts serve to inspire us, to lead us in the direction of our goal.

 

 

viridian green watercolor, viridian green pg18, watercolor mixing greens, debi riley watercolors, debiriley.com
Loose and Free!!    Viridian green and Ultramarine  22×30  Abstract

If you like, you could replace the words need and must, with “suggest”  it does, sound nicer on the ears.

 

  • we must be willing to paint loose
  • we have to….  Want It!

 

  • we need to practice,  frequently
  • practice with such repetition, that it might annoy us at times

 

  • we need to Think differently
  • think thoughts of big bold, loose! Free!

 

  • we need to let go
  • we need to open the closed doors

 

  • we need to stop,  all,  miserly thoughts
  • penny pinching  defeats,   Loose & Free

 

  • we need to think laterally
  • creative problem solving  for such issues, IS Possible

 

watercolor beginner flowers, easy purple iris bud, step by step, debiriley.com
Control –  serves a purpose, at times.

 

 

The World of Watercolor Loose and Free, though, is one where we can relax.  Let go.

Enjoy the colors, the music, the tones, the movement.

 

 

watercolor abstract simplicity, light red, debiriley.com
Simplicity Wc Light Red

 

 

bold colorful impressionist landscape, loose and free landscape paintings, debiriley.com
Loose and Free,  interpretation of  W.A.  landscape.      “uncontrolled  ill defined”

 

 

 

 

Watercolor Basics 

 

 

 

 

Softening the edges …art and nature

Softening the edges …art and nature

As many things do…. it held,  Promise.

This old watercolor landscape.

It sat upon the studio table among 20 others, all needing further contemplation, further work.

 

 

 

watercolor techniques for beginners, soften edges watercolour, impressionist landscapes trees, prussian blue mixes watercolour foliage, debiriley.com
Soften the Edges, watercolor basics

 

Watercolor Landscape Painting

How old was it?

How long did I hold it in reserve?

I’m smiling…. it may shock some, but it is about 15 years old.

 

I know I’ve mentioned it before, but its so true;

when   I don’t know precisely how to   use my brush to resolve a thing – I Stop.

Pause.

Put it aside.

And go on to work on the other papers and canvases I’ve laid out for myself.

 

 

I’ve come to realise that there will come a day,

when … it becomes crystal clear, exactly how to resolve the art work.

And then, it is so unbelievably easy!

 

 

Beginners’  Frustrations

I understand the beginner’s frustrations.

 

The urge to shred the result that did not (YET) meet nor yet match the vision within one’s mind.

But,

it is key, to note the word …. “Yet.”

 

It is important to be aware that as Beginners, we can not possibly do it as we wish to, right now.

We can’t jump into the pilot’s seat and fly the plane, swooping and diving, rolling and performing the aero gymnastics.

 

There will come a day.

When each task, each skill, becomes second nature.

 

 

 

Back to Work…..

So.  I’m back to the old watercolor painting and deep in thought.

 

I consider the outer edges and have realised they’re far too sharp, abrupt.

Those outer bordering edges are too hard.

They need gentled.

 

 

Even though the painting is so old, with watercolor,  I can still soften the edges.

I’m in luck.

 

But, the paper I chose was a smooth hot press type, so it requires a more delicate touch.

Had I used Arches Rough or even Cold Press,  I could have been more vigorous in my approach here.

Knowing your paper, is critical for making those resolutions successful.

 

 

Once the perimeter edges are softened sufficiently to my eye, I rotate the image.

I decide that I’m pleased with it more with the weight being on the right and the bottom.

Rather than Top and left, as before.

 

 

The other change-up I’ve played with is the matting.

I wanted to see how it might look, if it was surrounded in white.

But moved towards the left.  I was ‘curious.’

 

 

 

watercolor impressionist landscape, softening edges for depth, prussian blue foliage greens, patience persistence, not fiddling with watercolors, debiriley.com
Reflecting Soft Edges

 

Promises

 

As many things do,

the painting, held promise.

 

What we do to and with that creation,  what our outlook, our approach is,   determines if the promise is realised or not.

 

I think in this case, at least,  I was able to exercise the “Goldilocks” approach.

Nothing was taken away to destroy the lovely enthusiastic promise the painting had from the beginning.

 

The subtle resolutions  that,  for so long I was blind to,  oblivious to….

Now, came easy.

Yes.  After a long wait.

 

 

When I think about it,   this process in its own way, is ……

softening our ‘own edges’ in a round about way.

 

 

 

Follow Along Posts…….

3 Edges of Watercolor – Softening the Edges

Natures Edges – so soft and gentle   

Prussian Blue mixing  and greens 

Impressionist Landscapes in Watercolor 

Relax,  but  don’t fiddle 

Resolving, altering paintings    –  changing the look of old paintings 

 

 

 

 

There will come a day.

When each task, each skill, ….softening edges …….becomes second nature.

 

 

 

Addictive, Sheer Fun … Monoprinting

Addictive, Sheer Fun … Monoprinting

Addictive, yes.  But in a such a good way!

This is the kind of Addiction, that is good for us.

 

 

monoprinting in blue, handprinting, abstractions in prussian blue, debiriley.com
Sheer Fun……..     Monoprinting by Maureen

Monotypes and Monoprints

These were the focus for this week’s process…. at work.

 

They are two of the best techniques that I’ve used in sessions that always help participants let loose.

To let go.

 

To disentangle themselves from the rigidity of standards, regulations, rules.

And the demands of that voice within that whispers,

Where is, The Product?

and …   how Good, is it, really?”

 

 

Yes.  Monotypes and Monoprints are my ‘go to’  topics for when, the group needs to be encouraged to –   just let go.

 

 

monotype handprinting, purple floral patterns, fun art techniques, debiriley.com
Florals by Sue, monotype handprinting

 

 

Process  and Product

I love to encourage “process.”

“Process focus”  defeats fear.

 

Students, usually love to follow after the Product.

“Product focus,”   generally …. increases the likelihood of tenseness, fear, anxiousness.

 

Thus,  you can see the motivation  I have behind my strongly ‘Process based’  courses.

 

 

When we do monoprinting…. it is about the process.

And, wonderfully,   a plethora of prints pile up!

Not all are Rembrants.  Not all are ok.

But when we get a couple out of 10 that are pleasing,  how Lovely.

A bonus.

 

 

 

 

handprint on Stonehenge paper, still life subject monoprint, black ink on grey paper, debiriley.com
Monoprint on Stonehenge,  A sublime bouquet…. Libby

 

Monotype

Drawn onto the glass plate, (with a palette knife inked up)  then, the print was pulled.

A still life bouquet emerged.

Like magic.

 

 

A flick of the knife here and there.

Implies a vase is resting on a table.

With a few scatterings of leaves and a floral shape or two.

There is mystery here.

Inferences and subtle suggestions.

 

 

This is very zen,  very wabi sabi.      

Nothing…. is All spelled out for us.

We must, engage.

Enter the scene.

and so – we stay awhile, to figure it out.

 

Well done Libby!!

 

 

monotype in black ink, powerful design, fun art techniques, debiriley.com
same image, look now for a seated woman

 

Another Perspective

 

If,  you now look at the top a shape emerges as a head.

Maybe she wears a cap or beret?   Her face, well only the mouth can be seen….. as she glances over to our right.

 

And her body and torso angle downwards to our right.

It seems as though, she may be wearing a belted dress, or coat.

 

She appears to have a large fluffy scarf or hat perhaps upon her lap.

And , and (her right)  shoulder extends out and then in.

As if its then resting on her hip.

Is she  standing or is she seated….?

 

 

This type of image is the kind that makes for Excellent series.

You can do, hundreds of creative things with it.

 

Thats why its so important, to stop.  To pause.

To leave it alone.

To come back later with fresh eyes.

You can then fully harness its potential, rather than spoiling it by fiddling about.   

 

 

monotype handprinting, green prints of water, debiriley.com
Transitions of Greens, Joyce …monotype

 

The silken smooth dark to light transition of greens is really quite lovely.

Near black the dark green in foreground has a wonderful sense of depth.  The print pales off into the distance, allowing the viewer to travel through the image.  Even though, it is not quite finished, not quite representational – still we look and see and feel the depth.    This would be so very easy to return to, and put in just a couple of touches to ‘finish.’   Lovely.

 

 

 

monotype in blue, blue tree print, handprinting for beginners, debiriley.com
Lauren’s Leaning tree, Monotype

 

The blue knobby tree was handprinted.

Lauren used prussian blue ink,  a  Qtip  of all things,   was used to apply and draw the ink onto the plate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

All of these images, were so very kindly allowed onto my website by my class students.

 

….. please note that they are the owners of the images, with the sole right to copy, duplicate, sell or distribute.

 

 

Digital piracy is not ok.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Landscape in Blue

Landscape in Blue

Landscape in Blue.

Lone tree rising,  somber.  Where, is the foliage?

 

landscapes in blue monochrome, mountain and tree in the landscape, somber and quiet mood in art, printmaking styles for beginners, debiriley.com
A Lone Tree, rising against the stark blue bluff

 

Monoprinting in Blue

While this is not really a recent work,  the  monoprint was done in the past 24 months.

 

 

Our class topic at the time was on using color and line, format, and subject placement to create a ‘feeling’ that would be clear and evident for viewers to identify.

I created,  a somber nearly desolate feeling in this landscape.

 

While working the process that day I finished quite a  number of monoprints.

Some were florals, some animals & people –  which you have seen.

And then this one,  which  you haven’t seen.

 

 

Blue Ink

I chose to use only the blue ink and hand printing on a pale creamy paper.

The paper wasn’t pure white.

I thought, I might temper the starkness… just a little.

 

 

The solitary tree rising, carries with it a feeling of not just aloneness,  but also the sense of barrenness.

There is no foliage in sight.

 

Where, did all the foliage go we wonder?

Where are the other trees?

 

And,  then,  the next thought our minds consider,  might be:

“Is this tree still alive?  Still struggling?  Or is it finished?”

 

 

 

The prints you have previously seen:

arabian horse print indigo debiriley.com
Lines in Indigo Blue  monoprint…..     debiriley.com  (c)

 

 

Dream Horse in Blue, mono print debiriley.com
Dream Horse in Blue – Monoprint debiriley.com (c)

 

 

 

monotype, indigo fields, debiriley.com
Evening… Indigo Fields  –  debiriley.com

 

 

monotype painting, woman, calmness, debiriley.com
just for a  Moment – Close your eyes……..

 

 

 

 

Other Posts and articles

monoprints

monoprints  and monotypes 

trees in the landscape  Best 15 Trees 

moods and feelings in art 

paintings in blue    

blue power of blue painting 

 

 

floral rose monotype, simplicity, zen minimalism, red white and blue palette, debiriley.com
Red Roses, Blue Vase  – monoprint process    debiriley.com (c)