Brandywine Valley in brights!

Day 12 /31 – #WorldWatercolorMonth 

On the way back from the Andrew Wyeth exhibit at the Brandywine River Museum, I stopped for a really quick sketch of the lovely Brandywine Valley as seen on a partly cloudy day! The stunning sketches and paintings of Wyeth were still swirling in my head, and I was in the mood for a landscape. Although Wyeth used a much subdued palette for his landscapes, And subjects, I was in the mood for colors with a punch! What I wanted to capture was really the atmosphere rather than recreate the actual scene. To that effect I condensed the perspective a bit and tried to convey the mood that it represented to me as the sun sulked in and out of the stormy clouds casting a shadow sometimes and then taking it away…

Sketching at Longwood Gardens

Day 9, 10 & 11/31 #WorldWatercolorMonth

I decided to do it differently for the past three days of #WorldWatercolorMonth. For days 9,10 and 11 instead of posting each day I did cumulative sketchs of the same subject over and over. I figured this would improve my technique and a better understanding of my subject matter. I chose the water lily pool at Longwood Gardens. The pools is a bloom and though it’s a late start the lillies are looking great. The large lotus pads which are a trade mark of Longwood’s lily pool have not reached their peak size yet but are still huge! These leaves are what I’ll be focusing on over the next few days. I did a total of 12 sketches but I’m just posting three..

Fireworks on the National Mall 

Day 5/31 – #WorldWatecolorMonth

DC put on a spectacular show at the National Mall last night. Fear of thunderstorms had the fate of the fireworks in doubt, but we lucked out and the storm and rain held out long enough for the eager crowds to get what they came for and then some! I managed to capture a few splashes of watercolor in my sketchbook in semi darkness. I did several of these and then I just had to put down my brush and simply watch, and oooh and aaah with the rest of the crowd! This one came out better than the rest so I refined it a bit. 

I might just post the other splashes, if I feel bold enough…

Continuing with the theme of textures…

Everyday on my sketch walk all I see around me is texture – bleak rainy days, on cloudy days, and even on a sunny day. Here in the Pacific Northwest, come fall when the trees have lost all their leaves and the weather turns damp and rainy, the trees seem to come alive again, but this time the pale creamy green you see is mostly lichen. The lichen seem to get brighter and fuller and thrive in this moisture laden atmosphere. Everywhere you look tree trunks and limbs are laden with varieties of the stuff, different sizes, shapes and shades of green from bright greens to whitish pale greens. So sketching trees now isn’t about smooth trunks and limbs but lots and lots of texture to convey the appearance of the moss and lichen. Some are curly, some spongy, some even look like stag horns and some are feathery and long and dangle in strands, but they’re everywhere, even on the broken twigs and a limbs on the ground that manage to find their way home with me.¬†This has inspired me to add more texture to my watercolors and I’ve been trying new ways (new for me) to do so. Here’s a quick view of my attempts so far.

A few treasures from my walk…leaf and lichen

And my impression of a lichen laden tree…

Still working on texture creation, so there’ll be more.