If you've ever taken a class with me, you know that each year our class settles in, gets comfy, and makes ourselves a watercolor mix chart. These are great tools not only to learn to control the amount of water to use, but also to be able to reference when you just can't get a color right.
I've created four of them over the years that I'm proud of and actually use quite frequently. The first one I made now has a bit of paint blobs and splatter from being shuffled around my desk when I'm scurrying to get a color mixed that I like.
You can make them out of whatever colors you'd like to learn more about. Here is one in progress on the right. It utilizes all warm tones.
In an effort to organize them, make them more accessible, and because I love the look of them, I decided to finally hang them up on the wall. This is something I've been talking about doing for years and finally had the drive to get it done.
To start the process, I purchased some inexpensive frames at Michaels craft store that were BOGO and made by Home Decor. They were white and square which was exactly what I was looking for. The catch was that the size of the charts are 13X13" and these frames are 12 X 12" with a 10" opening in the matte. Just a wee bit too small. That meant that I would have to trim down the matte to fit most of my color chart in to the viewable opening. It was inconvenient, but not a deal breaker.
I got out my Exacto knife, a pencil and non-slip corked back ruler. I marked off 1" from the inside all the way around so that I could gain more space in the opening. The cork-back ruler keeps it from slipping while you cut. I try to put my ruler over the part I'm keeping to protect it. I do this just in case one of my cuts slips and this way I'm protecting the side I want to keep.
Next, I went for the frog tape. That's my favorite brand of low adhesive tape for masking off things and mounting images. It easily peals off without ripping your paper and also leaves a nice crisp edge when you are painting with it. You'll pay a little more for it, but it is well worth the price.
Once I get the charts taped in, I slip them in the frames and measure where to put them on the wall. This part takes more time then I'd like. I'm impatient with hanging, so I've learned that with any gallery wall, I have to force myself to be slow and methodical. Those two words do not come easily for me! I make sure to measure twice so that I only have to hammer once for each nail. : ) Oh - the nail holes I've created by rushing!
Here is how they look mounted in a grouping on the wall.
I just can't sing the praises of these mix charts enough. Let me know if you are interested in making one for yourself, I'm thinking about doing a workshop to make them.
I'm really happy with how they look all together. They are much less prominent then I had imagined. In fact, I had to point them out to my kids before they noticed them (which is unusual) Since my home studio is in my kitchen area, I wanted the pretty color, but didn't want these to be too dominant.
Have you made these before? If so are you actively using them to mix your colors or as wall art?
Hope this was inspiring and helpful to you.
A fresh 8 weeks of art classes are starting up at the end of March. To join in, be inspired and boost your creativity, get more information and sign up here
Birds are mentioned nearly 300 times in the Bible. I've always been interested in the idea of the sparrow. Growing up in Florida you don't hear much about them. Turns out that Florida has two kinds. One is the endangered Grasshopper Sparrow; they're are brown and grayish little birdies that always tend to be around other birds.
Sparrows were very common and abundant in biblical times. Seems like they were almost a nuisance. I picture them being viewed as our modern day pigeons ... more annoying then useful.
That said, the sparrow was the bird that Jesus mentioned when He was referring to our worth.
" Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground without our Father knowing. Fear not, you are more valuable then many sparrows"
If this little birdie is known by God, then we can rest assured that we are seen, loved and cared for.
Each year my husband and I take the opportunity to visit our close friends in Ft. Worth, Texas. It's something we look forward to as a time of rest and refreshment.
Being with old friends has a way of reminding you of who you are. It renews the tired, worn-out bits of ya... well at least it does for me. Getting away is ALWAYS well worth the effort!
I was delighted to see that my friend had cleared off a little desk for me to paint at during our visit. She knows me well. Early morning coffee and getting to paint something that's been swirling around in my brain is part of my rest. I snapped a few pictures of the different stages. I worked on her over the course of three mornings for about an hour each day.
Somehow, I find this idea of common birds being cared for by God comforting and calming. Not being anxious or afraid is also mentioned many times in the bible. Below are just a few of my favorites mentions:
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. - 1 Peter 5:7
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. - Philippians 4:6-7
I hope this new piece is refreshing to you too, my friends. I'm offering this one as a free .pdf download. If you have a good printer and would like to download and print her out, you can get the art here.
Comment below to let me know what verses or sayings about birds have been encouraging to you.
This week in art class we explored how to paint a stormy sky. What fun that was! We worked so wet that the paint just kind of did its own thing.
We pushed ourselves to work quickly and take the following steps together:
First we penciled in lightly where we wanted the horizon line. Then everyone added in rocks/mountains or any details that were desired.
We used the following colors: Payne's Gray (or Neutral Tint), Thalo Blue and Burnt Umber.
Using a large flat brush, we mixed up 4 shades of color on out palettes. One of the colors was a strong wash of the burnt umber with Thalo blue.
We turned our paper upside down so that the rocks and water were at the top and painted against the rocks and worked our way down (upside down to the top of the sky) We started off darker against the rocks and lightened as we went by adding more water.
We then splashed in some burnt umber for warmth and added in spots of pure thalo blue.
Using a damp, flat brush we flopped it around on the paper to lift out some whites. We kept washing the brush to get rid of the paint that we picked up. This could also be done with a tissue.
It's a good idea to add in a little bit of dimension to your clouds at this point to darken them up underneath a bit and give them some weight and depth.
Now the exciting part was next. At the top of the sky, boldly paint in some darks. Use a lot of pigment because it will dry much lighter then it is.
We let the sky dry and used Payne's Gray mixed with Burnt Umber to dash in the rocks scraping them with a palette knife to give some interest.
Next we started off dark in the foreground of water and lightened up as we went towards the horizon line. After it dried we added in some swipes of waves or pulled down a bit of the rock color for reflections. Gotta say, I want to explore this more and get better at it. It would be a fun thing to do while playing music on a rainy day!
Miss Holli and I are so excited to announce our 2020 Camp Create - summer art camp dates! We loved serving Seminole County with two weeks last year, so we are offering that again. You are welcome to reserve your spot by signing up your kiddos now and pay as we get closer to the summer. Can't wait to create more cool things this year with your children!
Here is the link to sign up and get more information.
Ages 6 through 12
Whether I am painting custom artwork, creating a water colored logo for a client, or teaching art students, I hope to refresh and inspire others with my work. Read more ...