Some subject are painted again and again and they never look the same, like sunflowers. I have done sunflowers in 2007, then in 2010, 2011, 2014 and now again. they are just wondeful to paint/sketch…the colour alone gives me huge kick when slapping it onto the paper. Sometimes my painting/sketching didn’t work, but I enjoyed painting sunflowers every time. So, before the season runs out, I need to get some sunflowers done in oil…looking forward to that.
Sunflower 1: Watercolour and pen, watercolour block, 30x30cm
Sunflower 2: Watercolour and pen, watercolour block, 3030cm
“A favorite food,” says the list of the art group EDM for this month of May.. Only one favorite food? That is a huge punishment! I can draw a favorite food for a whole month and even beyond. How then to choose between all my wonderful favorite fruits, the colourful vegetables, the meat…(yes, you Greenies, I love my meat!) And then there are fish and shellfish and how about a slice of cake? Or a cookie. And dessert. I never skip dessert. I won’t even mention chocolate and that first cup of coffee in the morning. Only one favorite food?
However, I can sometimes play by the rules and this time seems appropriate enough to do so. So one favorite food it is. I confess my weakness for macarons. Those beautiful, sensual, romantic and utterly delicious delicacies our patisserie in Beaulieu so shamelessly flaunts in the display window. By just looking in my eyes, they know I am there for a box of macarons. Yellows and purples and pinks and reds which vary between red fruits and blueberry and strawberry and lemon and vanilla, chocolate, coffee, caramel and my big favorite, that green one, the pistache. I love them all. I leave the patisserie on an euphoric cloud and with my precious macarons gently tucked next to each other in a quaint box and artfully tied with a pink ribbon. All that is left now, is to nail this sketch, so I can retire with my box of macarons to my favorite chair in my favorite corner…..sigh. I rest my case.
watercolor and dip pen with Sennelier indigo ink in S&B alpha sketchbook, 22.9×15.2cm
I can totally understand why there are nutcases walking around hugging each tree they come across. sometimes I am one of them. Cause a tree is not just a tree. It is a friend, it stirs our emotion, it is a refuge, that safe place under/or in its branches where we hide from all that scorches us..the sun, the world. The olive tree is all of that for me. I do hug my olive trees and talk to them, touch them, stroke them, care for them, love them. They make me think of sunshine and heat. They makes me hear the cigales. They bring me the scent of lavender and wild herbs in the fields and I see colourful vegetables drizzled with the golden oil from its olives, glistening with crystals of fleur de sel. That is my olive tree.
watercolor and Prera pilot fountain pen in S&B epsilon sketchbook, 14×21.6 cm
This morning it rained. then the rain made way for the sun. We decided some grilled fish would be great for lunch. While mon chéri grilled our daurade over the coals, I lazily, splashed watercolor and squiggled pen lines in two Stilman &Birn sketchbooks. White tulips in an urn and white daffodils among boxwoods…simple scenes turned into messy washes…how I love it..!
..Sketching in the garden 1..
pen and watercolor washes in Stillman & Birn sketchbook, alpha, 22.9×15.2cm
.Sketching in the garden 2..
pen and watercolor washes in Stillman & Birn sketchbook, Epsilon, 14×21.6cm
The reds in nature are now at their peak and are quickly fading away as the leaves start to fall. As much as the reds and nature are/were inspiring, I couldn’t succeed in really “getting into it”. the reds tricked me, my sketching was off and my wist was stiff as Sylvester Stallone’s biceps….fit for many other things, but not for drawing. It is nonetheless part of my series for November colours..so here are they…the reds of November.
The palette for a mix of all the reds:
- Golden pink
- Potter’s pink
- Cadmuim red
- Rose madder
- Venetian red
- Burnt sienna
- Alizaron crimson
- Ultramarine violet
* On Myfrenchkitchen, I have posted a recipe and photos..all in the spirit of November reds..
..terracotta pots on garden pot holder..
watercolor and pen in Daler & Rowney aquarelle sketchbook, 254×178 cm.
More experimenting with fall colors…which are quickly changing to grays and blacks and umbers. some of these experiments and playing with line and color simply turn out a mess…as can clearly be seen in “ochres and siennas”, but somehow I actually like this mess, since it is much more loose and spontaneous than the others, which are strict and too precise and stiff. the goal of this experimenting is, after all, not to render, but to interpret. In that sense, “ochres and siennas” are my best effort so far, the one I’m the happiest with.
..ochres and siennas..
watercolor and pen in sketchbook, 15,5x25cm
I used the messy sketch above to do a painting 0n larger scale and extra white abriano artistico paper. I shgould’ve gone for a more yellow tinted paper. Much lighter hand, lighter in color and more diverse in nuances…but still not what I’m after. A lot more work to do. But for this Sunday, it will do. I’m going for a walk in the woods now to find some grays.
..ochre fall branch..
watercolor on extra white Fabriano artistico paper HP,41,5x30cm
watercolor and pen in sketchbook, 15,5x25cm
I have done just some sketches. Nothing in particular. Just taking out a pen and small watercolor tin and putting something on paper.
…two plants on a coffeetable of a shop…
…a third potplant on another coffee table…
…a branch of berries picked on one of my walks…
All sketches done in pen and watercolor wash on Arches paper, 18x26cm