Watercolor is my first love when painting plein air in my gardens in the summer.
“Art Escapes” by Dory Kanter was revolutionary in my use of watercolor. She recommends working in triads. Basically what that means is using variables from each of the primary colors Red, Yellow and Blue. I've been using her approach for several years. It really makes painting not only easier and more focused, but creates exciting harmony to my work.
I was curious to see the results if I used all 4 triads on one subject, Stargazer lilies. I haven't decided which one I like. I'm wondering if it depends on my mood.
As the light changes and the days become shorter, I find myself drawn back to my studio. Early mornings with my journal nestled with my coffee cup in the corner of my studio feels good. As the season changes I'm full of eager anticipation for what will inspire me next. Dreams of a trip to Paris are reinforced by a recent purchase of a small shadowbox next to my desk painted by Connie Dillon: "Yvette chose a sophisticated, traditional apartment but soon joyfully realized that she was anything but sophisticated and traditional." Yes! that's me!
As the leaves fall, the light shortens, and days become cooler, I find myself moving indoors to my studio. It's time to break out my encaustics! The smell of melting beeswax and the juicy application of saturated pigment onto a board sets a truly cozy atmosphere in my studio. This painting entitled "My Chi Garden" is a 6 foot painting that invites me to walk in and recall those delightful summer days in the garden. I recently submitted this piece into the YAM Art Auction. The feeling that I just don't want to let it go tells me it might be good enough for a submission to a museum. We'll see if it is!
Update: It sold!
"Breathe In" acrylic painting done in my garden plein air, or on site in one session recently. These days are so numbered as I watch the lush green of my gardens turn to deep reds, oranges and luscious ochres. It's like watching nature get itself ready for winter. Immersing myself in the middle of this action truly helps me prepare too. Later in the months to come, the plants, trees and bushes become outdoor, sculptural still lifes that I paint from inside my dining room window.
My process begins with the planning and tending of my gardens in the spring. Each space is created much like a painting, paying close attention to color combinations and textures. Flower pots and furniture arranged on my porch remind me of sitting with my grandparents in wicker chairs surrounded by the sweet fragrance of lilacs. Memorable times like this are inspirations for paintings centered on the repose found at home on my porch and in my gardens.