Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Breakthrough

I've been drawing and painting a lot of cats lately.  I love the curves and dignity and subtle humor of cats.  I got inspired after seeing some of the the wood cut prints of Walter Anderson.  I've always liked bold lines and curvy designs.  I also love ancient Egyptian art and mythology.  When I was making fabric sculptures, I made an homage to Bast, the Cat Goddess, protector of women and children, and also Goddess of the Dance.




I may paint Bast at some point, but now I'm focusing on those demi-gods, the mortal cat.   I am particularly fond of orange tabbies, so here's my latest painting:
Worship is Not Optional, 8x10", ink & watercolor
I've been enjoying watercolor a lot lately.  For a while, though, I was pretty sure I wouldn't stick with it.  It's just too hard to control.  One of my friends told me that one day I'd come to enjoy watercolor's versatility.  I wasn't so sure.

But watercolor is easy to start and easy to clean up after.  I also got this cool refilling water bowl, the Rinse Well, which saves me from having to continually go after clean water.  I'm mobility impaired and prone to fatigue, so anything that make it easier is a plus.  The  Rinse Well has been a tremendous help.  Brushes lay flat in the water.  I can leave it on my desk and just start painting when the mood strikes and I have the time.
So it's easy to slop a bunch of water on paper and play around with the watercolors.  I do this a lot when I'm finished with a painting and have little puddles of color left.  I paint journal pages, practice doing washes and see what the paint will do.
I've also enjoyed experimenting with water based ink and seeing it feather in water and reveal subtle grays.
This  morning I saw the most interesting crack in the side walk.  It looked like a clenched hand and an upturned face with a flower growing out of forehead.  I sketched it.  I decided to try an ink and wash painting, really letting the paint flow.  Here is the result of that:
Breakthrough, 7x10", ink and watercolor
We all love the plants that grow through the cracks in the sidewalks.  It's lovely when our minds crack open a little and something new and delightful grows forth.

These paintings are for sale at my Etsy Shop. (Breakthrough has sold :)

Thanks for stopping by.  If you can, create some delight today.  If you'd like to see lots of delightful art, stop by the Paint Party Friday blog.  Lots of wonderous art of all sorts.


24 comments:

  1. I do love your cats! I love the orange ones, too. :) The sidewalk face and flower is insightful and interesting to look at. Thanks for your thoughtful observations about art and life.

    I like to see what watercolors will do when left to their own devices. Surprises! :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I used to get aggravated when I heard watercolorists talk about happy accidents. Now I go with the flow much easier and have discovered quite a few happy accidents :) Thanks for your comment and your cats!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love oranges best too! We have a 3 generation tradition of them, and they're all named Munsen after the original, named by my Norwegian granddad.
    Anyway, onto the work - -- I LOVE this one, so stylized and graphic - ancient and modern too. Really like the complimentary scheme and bold colors and edges which are new for you lately. It's also good to hear that you're really playing with the medium - just seeing what the paint does. That is so important but many are too lazy, or just excited to get to the finished place, that they neglect the fundamentals, the study of the medium, and suffer for it. I am one of those regretfully, but getting better. Thanks for this post - I'm inspired to really get to know my paint. ♥

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thanks for your comment. I think playing with materials is so critical -- actually, playing in general is critical to health and happiness. I got a toned paper sketch book, so the colors had to be bold to work with the background. Now it's a nice new direction. Let me know what you discover as you get to know your paint.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Love your cat. New techniques are always good. Happy PPF. Take care, nice job.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I rather love orange tabbies too! Going with the flow is not always easy with watercolour but you are right it is the best way to work.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I love your sculpture and your orange tabby is so cute! Great find on the water dispenser. Interesting piece inspired by the pavement too!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I agree, cats are very inspiring as a subject for art! Love your artwork and your ink and wash work looks lovely. Thank you for your kind words on my post and happy PPF!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I LOVE your cat sculpture. I also agree that cats make very interesting subjects, although I haven't illustrated many of them. Blessings!

    ReplyDelete
  10. nice work, I particularly like your 'breakthrough' painting, how creative.

    ReplyDelete
  11. love the cats just watching one in the garden now

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wonderful cat art! Cat's do have wonderful form and graceful movement! Lovely watercolor with a lovely sentiment, too!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Very interesting inspiration in Egyptian art, I like your work!

    ReplyDelete
  14. The crack in the side walk is so real. . .I remember those days and yes, the things that grew out of them. thanks for your visit. Blessings, Janet PPF

    ReplyDelete
  15. I admire artists who create art inspired by culture that emerges from the past. Your painting of the crack in the pavement turned into a happy woman, how beautiful!
    Happy PPF
    Ilona

    ReplyDelete
  16. I think your cat is wonderful! I love cat paintings in all styles so I can appreciate cat appreciation! Super art. :)

    ReplyDelete
  17. That rinse-well sounds very interesting! Great cat-painting! she really has personality. And how wonderful that you get inspired by the cracks in the pavement. An interesting painting came out of it!

    ReplyDelete
  18. fabulous cats, and I love how you were inspired by a crack in the sidewalk-beautiful watercolor painting!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Awesome! :) I fancy both your handcraft and the cat and the last painting of the wall. so fun to discover such a creature in the wall, it has vibrant and warm lovely golden colors and the lovely brownish! :)

    ReplyDelete
  20. great cat art and a wonderful watercolor painting!
    Thank you for visiting me ---

    happy weekend!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Love your cat, he's magnificent! I checked out the last few posts too and liked the story about your brother. The painting of him and the birds is so beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Your cat is fantastic!! All wonderful pieces... Your protector of women is excellent!! I love your water container too...I need one...where did you get it?...I love that Idea! I also have mobility issues!! Thanks for sharing!

    Hugs Giggles

    ReplyDelete
  23. Love your cats, particularly the second one. Beautiful cat work!

    Have a great day!
    Nora

    ReplyDelete
  24. The orange cat is wonderful - I love orange tabbies as well! The watercolor is beautiful - I like how a crack got you inspired to this painting, it turned out really nice. The woman who emerged here looks so happy.

    ReplyDelete

If you liked this post, consider following my blog by email. Sign up on the left side of the blog, near the top. Thanks!
"Love art. Of all the lies it's the least untrue." -- Gustave Flaubert