Sunday, May 31, 2015

Lonely Bird...

Lonely Bird - GIFTED
An unplanned and casual Painting of a Lonely Bird.

Practice never goes waste...keep practicing!

Happy Painting!

Mediums: Watercolors
Title: Lonely Bird
Category: Nature- Birds
Size: 12" x 18" (30 cm x 46 cm)

Surface: Arches Watercolor Block, smooth surface, 140 lb Cold Press,
Paints: All colors form my Palette
Brushes: Da Vinci Kolinsky Round Size 1, 3 and 5

Monday, May 25, 2015

Nātyānjali-10: A Tribute to Indian Classical Dance...

Nātyānjali - A Tribute to Indian Classical Dance
Twelve was the magic number I decided and wanted to do twelve Paintings when I started this series of Indian Classical Dance. Continuing the series on this subject, I am getting close to that number. Painting after Painting, I only tried to challenge myself.

Enjoyed so much of doing it!

Happy Painting!

Mediums: Watercolors
Title: Natyanjali-10
Category: Random portraits - Admirers
Inspiration: A commercial video of Shobhana
Size: 16" x 24" (41 cm x 51 cm)

Surface: Artistico Fabriano Watercolor paper, 140 lb Cold Press
Paints: Winsor & Newton Burnt Sienna, Opera Rose, Cadmium Orange, Ultramarine Violet, Cobalt Turquoise Light, Cobalt Blue, Neutral Tint, and HWC Yellow Ochre 
Brushes: Da Vinci Kolinsky Round Size 1, 3 and 5

Sunday, May 24, 2015

A Good Sketch often leads to a Good Painting...

Pencil Sketch for a new Painting
Sketching is the basic foundation of Painting, especially when it comes to Portraits. Even landscape paintings need some sort of sketching. A good Sketch always leads to a good Painting. It is easy to mess with proportions or compositions if the Painting is attempted directly unless it is purely an abstract painting.

Sketch leading to Painting
Pencil is often the sketching-tool for Watercolor Painting. The sketch doesn't need to be very detailed. Just an outline suggesting some highlights, basic composition and separation of objects in the painting is good enough for starting a watercolor painting. Much of the details can be added later while painting.

A good Painter, in my opinion, needs to have good Drawing skills. Here is an outline sketch that I did for my new Painting on the subject Indian Classical Dance with a Hindu Temple as the back-drop. Once the sketch is done, Painting is nothing but following the flow of water on the paper, mixed with skill and imagination of colors. It leads to a beautiful Painting.

One needs to master drawing in order to master Painting!

Hard-work and only hard-work makes anything possible ;)

Keep Sketching and Keep Painting! 

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Nātyānjali-9: A Tribute to Indian Classical Dance...

Nātyānjali- A tribute to Indian Classical Dance

Continuing my series on the subject of "Indian Classical Dance", I tried this painting a bit different than any other previously done on this subject. With a mixture of both cool and warm colors, I tried to get some dramatic effect of light coming through the skies onto everything visible in this painting.

Light is what makes our eyes see objects. It is also the light that makes a Painting look interesting and beautiful. Painting after painting, I am still trying to learn the Art of seeing light and the skill of bringing it out from the paper, which otherwise is spread all over hiding the actual Painting in it.

This painting is based on a commercial of Indian Handloom in which the versatile dancer Shobhana danced to the wonderful tunes. This video, so beautifully done, is the source of inspiration for my painting. Here is the link to the actual video.

Happy colorful and de-lightful Painting!

Mediums: Watercolors
Title: Natyanjali-9
Category: Random portraits - Admirers
Inspiration: A commercial video of Shobhana
Size: 15" x 22" (38 cm x 56 cm)

Surface: Saunders Rough High White Watercolor paper, 140 lb Cold Press
Paints: Winsor & Newton Burnt Sienna, Opera Rose, Ultramarine Violet, Cobalt Turquoise Light, Cobalt Blue, Neutral Tint, and HWC Yellow Ochre 
Brushes: Da Vinci Kolinsky Round Size 1, 3 and 5

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Before you even touch the brush...

Preparing for a new Painting
"The process of Painting actually starts way before you even touch the Brush..."

Watercolor Painting is not just a process of working with colors and water on the paper. As I heard, when Tom started the workshop by saying- the actual process of painting starts way before you even touch the brush.

The thought process of what to paint is the first step of a painting. Picking the subject, looking for a source of inspiration, selecting the aspect of inspiration, adding your own imagination to it before you even start sketching is all the initial process of painting.

Sketching is the next step in the process. Sketching is nothing but a quick study of the subject, studying the values, composition, tones (light, mid, dark), etc. Some Artists even do a sketch and keep it as a reference throughout the process of painting. For experienced Artists, this becomes an optional and they skip it usually.

Then comes the selection of paper, choosing the right type of paper, the right size and doing an actual sketch on the paper which is usually done with a pencil.

Once the sketch is done, it is important to stretch the paper. There are many ways Artists do this. I tried few ways of doing it by reading books, watching videos, asking friends who do watercolor painting. I finally settled on simply taping the paper, all four sides to a hardboard with just a masking tape. Stretching the Paper is the most fun step for me that pulls me into the actual step of painting. Once I am up to this step, then I can almost say I will finish my painting in next few hours.

Next comes the process of preparing the palette, cleaning previous painting mess if still left, adding more colors from the tubes if needed, wetting colors and choosing and preparing main colors to use. Some Artists use masking fluid, sea salt, sponge, cling paper etc. for getting some effects which otherwise would be just hard to get. I tried all these techniques, but lately I am not using any of these. My paper is my masking fluid, my brushes and just a paper napkin, water in two small jars, and a water spray bottle...are all the things that I need.

Once I am done with all this preparation, I just turn on my favorite music on my phone. That takes me away into the world of painting. With few breaks during this fun, I come to a stopping point to call it done.

The last thing and the most enjoyable step is- signing. This is the proud moment during the entire process of painting. When I step back and take a look at the signed and finished (at least stopped if not finished, a painting is never finished anyway) painting, that brings the true inner happiness out with a feeling of "Yes, I did it!"

Keep Painting, it's en-joy-fully fun ;)

Sunday, May 10, 2015

An Artist can also be a Surgeon...

Portrait of Divine couple - Radha and Krishna

On the very last day of the Painting Workshop that a took last year conducted by Thomas W Schaller, I learned how to correct a Painting in order to make it look better. He rightly used the term Surgery for describing this after-done-process. There is no better term than that.

No Painting is perfect and there is always some aspect of it that could have been done better, or differently. Many of Master Paintings reveal this hidden surgery under the paintings when looked at  very closely.  Tom showed us how Paintings can be made look better by this process. Taking that lesson taught by a Master, I looked at my Painting that I thought I finished and even signed yesterday. I felt that it can be made look better by correcting the very obvious mistake done. The bottom portion of the painting looked odd to me which was left mostly untouched. I corrected that and also added little value of colors all around.

It certainly looks better now. Surgery successfully done! Thanks Tom for teaching me the technique!

Lesson Learned: If at all life gives a chance to correct a mistake, go for a careful surgery. Do not repeat the same mistake. Repeated mistakes only ruin it further...

Learn something each day. After all, life is nothing...but, learning lessons!

Happy painting! 

Saturday, May 9, 2015

What dreams may (be)come true...

A tribute to my Dad

A tribute to my Dad...

Lord Rama and Sita by my Dad
I grew up observing closely my Dad's wonderful Indian Ink Drawing of Lord Rama and Sita. This is the drawing that I stared at most in my life.

Later I tried the same with Ballpoint pen and changed it to Radha and Krishna. Doing a full-blown Painting of the same has been in my dream list for a very long time. I finally attempted to make my dreams (be)come true...

Going BIG...

I never tried this big size Painting. Very first time, I tried 22" x 30" (56 cm x 76 cm) watercolor painting. That is big for a painting like this in watercolor. I spent many hours and in fact probably the longest time of all in recent years. Though I started this last week, I struggled today along the way to get it done. More than anything, my struggle was with both faces to get that pleasant look, as close to as pleasant they look in my Dad's work...I know, I couldn't quite get there for obvious reasons :(

At least, I am happy I made a bold attempt. If I had waited further, the time would never have come!

This is my TRIBUTE in many respects...

Never give up with the God's given gift in life. That is the only way to pay respect to God.

Happy Painting!

Mediums: Watercolors
Title: Radha & Krishna
Category: Random portraits - Admirers
Inspiration: My Dad's Drawing
Size: 22" x 30" (56 cm x 76 cm)

Surface: Saunders Rough High White Watercolor paper, 140 lb Cold Press
Paints: Every single color from my Palette
Brushes: Da Vinci Kolinsky Round Size 1, 3 and 5