Friday, 30 November 2012

Water Lilies

One of the great things about Avon Valley Artists is that the set programme pushes you out of your comfort zone and can result in surprising paintings. This week was no exception and the painting I produced is so what I didn't expect and so unlike my usual style. It was not intentional, just the way it went!

The subject was 'Water', and being me, I chose a photo of a couple of water lilies which I took last summer, where I had the joy of painting the flowers, but there was plenty of water to satisfy the subject.

I didn't stop to think think through the process, and I was so anxious to be seen to be painting water during the session (as one of the organisers, I stick rigidly to the rules ) that I didn't think about how to integrate the flowers into the water once it was painted! I also struggled a bit as I did not have much detail in the water to help me produce it and it is not something I paint on a regular basis so I had to make it up a bit as I went along!

When I had finished the water - I used mixtures of  Ultramarine and Anthraquinachridone Blues with Teal Blue and some white Acrylic Gouache added into the wet washes - and started painting the leaves, I realised that all the hard water edges were dry and probably too dark to soften successfully.

 It needed a change of plan. I made the decision to continue with the 'illustrative' style of painting and added the flowers with no bleed at the edges of the petals and shadows very cleanly defined. I did add plenty of splatter at the end to soften the overall effect, but still the painting is startlingly dissimilar to my usual aspirations.

What I did enjoy, was having a go at painting dew drops on the front petals of the LH Lily. I saw this process illustrated ages ago in a book by Jan Kunz 'Painting Watercolour Florals That Glow' but had not given it a try until now. I did a bit of practice first (the trials can be partly seen at the side of the initial drawing) as they do need a light touch, but I think they work well, but I was careful not to put in too many and overdo the effect!

Monet can sleep peacefully in his resting place! No threat there!


  1. Very nice but I'd preferred just a few `lost' edges (!)

  2. You are right Peter, so do I, but somehow it did not happen. Will try to do better next time!(Joke)

  3. Not you Yvonne, but still a lovely painting. The beads of water are most impressive. Photorealism perhaps?

  4. Thanks Ray. No, not me at all. Still not really sure how it evolved quite like that!! But like most of my paintings, it was fun to do!

  5. It was nice to see how you dealt with the dried edges and ended up with another style of painting, plus the impetus to add those drops of water! Enjoyed seeing this post too and I also enjoy your sense of humour :D)
    I appreciated your reference to Jan Kunz - thank you, always beaut to learn of another artist's work. Cheers now.

  6. It is a while since I painted this, Susan, so it was nice to go back and see it again. I am glad you enjoyed the post and thank you for your continued interest in my posts.

  7. Very beautiful work! I came across your blog, and I must say, it's very inspiring!

  8. Just lovely! Very interesting blog...glad I happened upon it..

    1. Thanks Leta. I am pleased you enjoy the blog