If you read my earlier post you will know that this is the first afternoon of my really ttough artist week schedule! This painting which is 50 x 32 cm in size took two hours to paint.
This week I have introduced a tough working schedule to my artist week. I’ve been frustrated that I am just not producing enough work. Unfortunately my plans burst after only one day as I became ill, I’m incredibly sensitive to what I eat , it was either broccoli or balsamic vinegar that did it. My body can’t cope with many types of sugars since I passed midlife.
Anyway, the plan is for me to follow a ridget schedule and it worked yesterday so I’m really happy about that. In the morning I spent two hours on a commission and then anther two hours on this painting that is featured here. It’s the ferry called Norrskär that has been in service since 1910.
My first life drawing since the spring and I decided to use my watercolours. I used cheap Canson watercolour paper, I hate it compared to Arches or Fabriano but it’s just too expensive to waste a block of quality paper during a life drawing session. I used Koo i noor woodless watercolour sticks for the first time, I really liked them so I’ll be using them a lot in future. Each of these watercolours took five minutes to complete, at that speed one cannot hesitate – a quick line sketch of the figure and then paint as much as you can in the remaining time before the pose ends. It’s stressful for sure but I find it exhilarating.
Back at work does not have to be a negative thing for my art productivity. Yesterday I was asked by my boss if I could do a caricature of an employee who is leaving this Friday. I accepted the challenge but by lunchtime today I was regretting saying yes. I battled on trying to create a caricature, it wasn’t easy as I only had one picture as reference, a smiling one. The person in question is more know for his scowl than his smile so I had to use a bit of imagination.
(A bad photo of the artwork unfortunately.)
There is a beautiful shaded street in the center of Palma de Mallorca. I saw two street buskers playing really soft and harmonically. I started drawing them, the light was wonderful. Unfortunately they moved on after a few minutes and I was left trying to remember the lighting on their clothes etc.
The second watercolour was a quick one. I decided that I really need to loosen up. Not be so fixed on details. Why is it so hard to do this? I was happy with the result, I wish I could be so relaxed all the time.
I’ve been walking around the streets of Palma de Mallorca. I’m starting to find my way around the old narrow streets in the shopping districts. This court yard I found down a quiet side street away from all the tourists. It was a pleasure to paint, it was so tranquil.
I jumped on a last minute flight to Palma de Mallorca yesterday. I tried to paint the bright pink and mostly drunk lobsters on the beach. It didn’t inspire me. Maybe it will tomorrow, trying hard to adjust to the heat (29). Actually, tomorrow I’ll head into Palma, I’m staying in a charter-hotel in Arenal. It’s fun, I feel very lucky to be able to do this kinda thing.
What do you do when you enjoy yourself? You do it again!
This one was easier than yesterday’s effort. I felt more comfortable painting the water at least. I still haven’t got my skies in order. It’s the scale, I need to relax but it is easier said than done.
Rush hour in the Stockholm archipelago
69 x 49 cm on Arches rough 300g
I still find it difficult working on a larger scale than before. The surface dries so quickly as my brush races down the paper, so easy to leave unwanted faults, not enough pigment in my palette or brushes that are too small. Still, I want to master large watercolours so the only thing I can do is try, try and try again again. I hate to admit it but I think the preliminary sketch is better than the final painting.