Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Heat of the Sun

"Adobe in the Sun", 7"x9", watercolor on paper, copyright Erin Rogers Pickering

The heat and the vibrancy of the Southwest sun.  Love it!
I really pumped up the color of these buildings to capture the experience of that moment, and that trip... 

The heat, the vividness, the energy, the wonder, and the deep-down-all-over-amazing feelings of being in Taos.  The firey color palette brings it all back in a heartbeat!  I can feel the warmth of that sun on my face again.

Like getting a visual hit of vitamin D.  
Ah... that'll help get me through the rest of winter in NJ.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Effect of Color

"Bridges of Memorial Park, Winter", watercolor on paper, 7x9, copyright Erin Rogers Pickering

It's funny, I started this painting on a blazing hot day this past summer from a photo I took last winter.  Hoping I could cool myself by diving into a cold, winter scene.  Planning and expecting to paint with cool blues dominating.  But, hard as I tried I kept being drawn to the spots of warm morning sunlight hitting and reflecting under the bridge. And, they kept getting hotter and hotter.

My frustration was growing as my cool blue, icy snow painting was radiating heat... and yellows, golds and oranges started to dominate.

I abandoned ship (or bridge) about 3/4 the way through this painting - disgruntled.  Annoyed that I could not consciously control my color choices.  The outside temps of 100 had taken over.  So I walked away, and found a spot in front of the air conditioner with a pencil and sketchbook.  (no color to control or be controlled with an HB pencil)

My husband hoped I would finish it - he loved what was developing.  But, I put it away so it couldn't taunt me... making it clear the heat was winning!

I took it out this week because I wanted to free up the watercolor block it was on.  I had a choice - to slice it off the block unfinished and consider it a loss, or actually complete it.  I chose to finish, realizing that the snow outside my window was going to assist me.  
It did! Thank you!

I left the 'heat' of the painting exactly as it was created during the summer... but was able to finish the cool snow and shadows as I had originally intended.  

I am happy with the results, but stand amazed at how much the weather, the light, and the color around me effect what I create!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Upcoming Watercolor Workshop - playing with paint

Evergreen, watercolor sketch, copyright Erin Rogers Pickering

My  little girl loves "water painting" with me!  We go through stacks of copy paper painting, experimenting, doodling, mixing colors and playing... okay, we both love it!  :)

Last week while painting with her I took out my Strathmore watercolor cards so I could 'play' a little more seriously.  I am starting to prep for a watercolor workshop on Jan 29th at Gerayln's Art Studio, and wanted to try out some salt techniques.  So using her crayola pan paints and some wacky, bent up bristle brush I tried out the salt on my tree.

Now, I love my Windsor & Newton series 7 brushes and my holbein tube watercolor paints (never giving them up!)... but I was impressed that I got decent results with kiddie brushes and paints because I had good paper.
And, she was super excited, and felt very grown up, to get to paint on Mommy's cards!

“When we engage in what we are naturally suited to do, our work takes on the quality of play and it is play that stimulates creativity.” – Linda Naiman

For details on playing with watercolors at my workshop check out Maplewood Patch

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

What to wear... for cocktails

Juicy, sunny, sparkling and bright... for your table, your bar - and your footwear!  Refreshing lemoncello looks smashing with a black dress and a martini glass.

Cheers, baby!  and be sure to have one for me.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012