Watercolor painting of Durant nature park. I was there painting yesterday and finished a 22×30 plein air watercolor. This painting was done in the studio. I saw this deer one day. Limping along the edge of woods. I love this park. Very quiet. I see new things to paint whenever I visit (it is not very far from where I live). Seasons provide me inspirations for painting the same subjects differently. Everything is lush green at this time of the year. I see deers many times when I am there. I used 300 lb watercolor paper for this painting. I use this paper sometimes for plein air work too. There is a benefit of using the same materials for every painting- you can concentrate entirely on the subject. But, my experience is that this limits the subjects I paint and techniques I use to convey stories. Watercolor painting allows me to work quickly when working en plein air. And when working in the studio, I can slowly paint some of my subjects. I can do dry brushing, for example. And using different papers, paints and brushes help me.
I have been painting more than before and having a good time doing so! New for me this year is going to be painting on larger scale more often. I paint half sheets when painting on location and paint half or full sheet when in studio. I will be painting full sheet watercolors on location. What I like about painting on this scale on location is that, it allows me to learn the brush work. Studio work on any scale can be slower and I can get bogged down in details and in creating finished work. Work done on location is different. I have limited time to capture what I am after. So, I have to work quickly and find ways to paint details using visual language. I use bigger brushes when painting this way. I have also pared down my setup so I can carry everything when I am wandering around the woods. While I have always wanted to paint on bigger scale en plein air, I was more enthused by my recent trip to the Brandywine River museum. Andrew Wyeth has always been my hero and this was the first time when I got to see his watercolors in person. I was amazed at the scale of his paintings- both egg tempera and watercolors. I also got to see some of the paintings that I have never seen online or in printed media before. I am also a fan of N.C. Wyeth and other artists of his era and so enjoyed looking at those paintings as well. I really loved works of Howard Pyle, William T. Richards and Dean Cornwell (one painting- badly crackled but beautiful). I did not get to see some the Andrew Wyeth drybrush paintings which I have always wanted to see. But, that may be a good reason to visit there again!
– Tesh Parekh
Fine Artist and Live Wedding Painter