Monday, March 21, 2016

Just a shade different from “the blues”!

What a curious winter/spring morning.  Awakened well before dawn.  Before 4 a.m, actually.  I HAD TO crawl out of bed.  There are colors swimming in my head!  I shuffled off with my first cup of steamy-hot coffee into the studio to put pigment to paper.  

My latest travel palette & some color mixing
I’m working on a beach-y watercolor for a dear friend, and hues of the ocean froth as it meets the beach are really captivating and enchanting me lately.  Blues, greens, sandy browns, and white foam.  But how, exactly, to mix them???  I left plenty of white paper when I started this painting, but the more closely I examine the reference photo, the more I realize just how many different shadows and lights there really are in the foreground.  I know a glaze is required, but where?  how? 
Fuzzy in progress

Spritzing my palette, I muddle around, splashing a test with all the blues I can use, until I can SEE the individual colors and where they need to appear on the painting.  I stop and walk away deliberately, to let the paint dry and fade before I make the commitment.  Besides, I need another cup of coffee!  
Testing some sea-water washes

So I warm up the car and trek out in my fleece warm-ups for some smokes and a drive-thru breakfast—something I very rarely do.  Ever.  By now, there are gentle little strokes of that funny, pre-dawn blue-ish gray and soft peachy color peeking out from beneath the usual dirty grey clouds in the Eastern sky.  (More color awareness flooding my brain!)

Back in my warmish kitchen, I pack hubby off to work, flip on the internet, and surf thru some of my favorite meditation and art posts while I munch on my breakfast sandwich.  Not as good as home-made, but warm.  And it doesn’t require any dish washing!

Splashing on a test page is almost as much fun as really being there on the beach.  Not as warm, even in my studio.  But then, nothing beats the heat of the sun on silky-soft sand between the toes, or the sounds of the waves and sea birds.   I think I’ll turn on my little space heater to trick my feet into believing that they are THERE while I lay on some thin, ocean-colored glazes.

Maybe, the “almost being there” will satisfy me for today.  In the meantime, I will continue to plot how to turn my living room into an “almost beach-y” retreat.  More color needed to compensate for the winter greys.  (Just a shade different from “the blues”!)

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