Painting With Nature

The bottom left-hand texture of this painting was created with leaves

I started my Wednesday morning with some hot coffee, a Bobby Darin record, and watercolor videos. A few of them were more meditative, which reminded me of how much I myself love this technique. Meditative art–or at least my definition of it–is when you paint/create with having no idea what you are going to come up with. You start with one or two colors, one brush, and just, go with the flow.

See what I did there?

Meditative painting is how I’ve been filling my Wordless Diary, as it is a great way to get my thoughts/feelings down onto paper, without trying to put what said thoughts/feelings are into words. I often feel better after finishing a wordless entry, than I do after writing two pages of whiny nonsense.

Wordless Diary Entries

I’ve been feeling a bit meh lately, and so I decided I needed a good meditative/wordless session. And as I was filling an empty cherry jar with water, I noticed Goo’s flowers from her recital by the window. One of the roses had wilted, and the loose petals were just begging to be plucked. I took a few, along with two or three tiny leaves. My goal was to stamp their patterns into the painting somehow.

The first painting was a major flop–as the first painting tends to be, because I’m “clearing the cobwebs” so to speak–but the next painting flowed together much nicer. I switched between watercolors and pens. I just let my brain wander, and refused to worry about whether or not I was going to produce something extraordinary.

Tip: when doing a meditative painting like this, using scrap paper helps keep you worry-free

Flowers painted with rose petals and gouache

The leaves made pretty “stone” textures at the base of my hills, making me think of a rocky cliffside by the sea. The rose, however, didn’t do much. It was much too soft to paint wet-in-wet with, and even placing something heavy on top of it didn’t leave an imprint. I decided that once the painting was finished, I would try a bit of wet-on-dry with gouache. And it worked nicely!

I have used bits of foliage here and there in previous paintings, but I think I’ll start a whole collection of natural tools. Rocks, sticks, dead flowers, to name a few. Should be fun!

Materials Used:

Daniel Smith watercolors (indigo and Aussie red gold)

-Brea Reese watercolor in (lake blue and pink)

-Winsor & Newton Designer’s Gouache (white)

-Scrap cold press paper

-Mixed media paper

 

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All images/videos ©Lina Forrester

Aussie Red Gold

When I saw Jean Lurssen using Aussie Red Gold in one of her YouTube videos, I knew it was going to be the next color on my list. But Daniel Smith watercolors are not cheap (this one was around 15$ for a tube) and so it remained on my wishlist for a month or two, until I found the means to splurge.

And wow this color rocks!

I think what I like most about this color is its warmness. I have a lot of cool yellows, but I’ve always gravitated toward my Woodlands palette for the warmer yellows and oranges.

So far I’ve only been playing with this color, testing its limits, but I do have a few ideas brewing of sunrises and golden autumns and sunflowers.

This morning, I shot a timelapse of my play, in which I mixed the new color with my other Daniel Smith watercolors, and then splashed around on a scrap piece of paper.

These are the colors I mixed on the video in order:

-Perylene Red

-Hansa Yellow Medium

-Yellow Ochre

-Raw Umber

-Burnt Umber

-Payne’s Gray

-Rare Green Earth

-Prussian Blue

-Ultramarine Blue

-Indigo

-Moonglow

My favorite mix of these was probably the pretty green I got with prussian blue, but I did enjoy the neutrals I got as well, with moonglow and ultramarine blue.

I’m not sure what my next color will be. As of right now, I’m pretty set, and the only thing I may need to buy soon is another primary set, as I’m low on those three colors. But you can be sure that when I buy a new color, I will definitely write all about it on here!

Until next time!

-Lina

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Setting Goals for the New Year

Freelensed Xmas Tree Lights!

I like goals. I have a problem with goal-setting because I set too many goals. But goals make me go, and writing them down makes them seem even more graspable. It brings them to life!

Want to set a goal or multiple goals? Step one is to write them down.

I wrote down eleven goals I’d like to accomplish, not necessarily in 2019, but in general. Therefore they’re more like “bucket list” items. They are as follows:

1. Show at a gallery in the nearby city

2. Teach a watercolor class

3. Publish a book (art book or coloring book)

4. Have a (successful) Patreon

5. Start a YouTube channel

6. Do a plein air painting

7. Do a show at the local Conservation center

8. Travel somewhere and paint there. Paint-cation!

9. Run an art camp for local kiddos

10. Be a featured artist at the local gallery

11. Join Skillshare and learn my buns off

Again, these don’t have to all be accomplished in 2019, but a few are already in the works, like the watercolor classes and the kid’s camp. I’m very excited!

As for my project 365, I think I will be going for two this year. I’d like to not only do a 365 days of Art (with monthly themes) but I’d also like to do a 365 days of Yoga, because I love yoga and really want to get back into it. I’m interested in seeing how my health and well-being improves over the year with this challenge.

But enough about my goals! I want to know about yours! Any New Year’s resolutions in mind? Thinking of trying a project 365? Feel free to comment below, or shoot me an email!

Happy New Year!

Oil Painting Returns: Five Lessons I’ve Learned

If you’ve been following along, you’ll remember that I’ve been having tons of issues with oil paint, from anxiety over the toxic mediums, to headaches from resin and linseed fumes. For a while I was pretty bummed about it, but soon moved on to gouache and did my best to forget about oil entirely. Continue reading “Oil Painting Returns: Five Lessons I’ve Learned”

My First Go at Oil Paint

Self-portrait

Ever since I started the “Ghost” series, I’ve been contemplating giving oil paint a go. I felt like some of the things I wanted to paint would do much better with a heavier medium, and I’m not a huge fan of acrylic. And ever since I’ve been a part of the local gallery, I’ve seen tons of gorgeous oil paintings, and I suppose I just got the itch in general.

So what was my holdup? Well, for starters, I’d heard it was toxic to use around kids and animals. Since I have a 5-year-old and three beloved pets, I have always just kept oil out of mind. Second of all, I always figured oil was too expensive for my budget. And finally…well it was just daunting. Only the “pros” use oil, right? The people who know what they’re doing? Not someone who just wants to dabble. Continue reading “My First Go at Oil Paint”