I just added a new painting to my fine art site in the watercolor gallery. It’s a portrait of Ozzie, my cat for 15 years, whose grace and presence enhanced whatever space she chose to occupy. Ozzie The Cat is my first attempt at painting a furry creature in pure watercolor, and I found it extremely challenging to represent the texture yet softness of the fur and the complexity of the background patterns. With a subject for painting that is close to my heart the magic of bringing it to life in a new (and permanent) way is very gratifying. It goes beyond the representation of beauty in art to warming the spirit of love.
As a watercolor instructor at Bellevue College I get to start a new half sheet painting every quarter in order to explain the process of developing a painting from a drawing or photo. I need to pick compositions that require some masking and texture to demonstrate, then, after that, its up to me to finish my paintings as my class time and attention is focused on coaching each student’s process. Teaching has spurred me back into painting realistically from photo references, which I did early in my own training as a watercolor painter before stylizing my art for a career in the illustration market. I’m trying varied subject matter that will help me coach my students through working on their own chosen images, which have included beloved pets. I’m starting to discover what subjects I enjoy spending lots of time with through painting.
Some of my student’s work from recent classes is posted on this blog.
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