Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Transparent Watercolor on Yupo paper  13 x 18 cm

It's not as though I haven't been painting. It is just that everything has been ending up in the trash.  I have become increasingly frustrated with my lack of understanding of the characteristics of watercolor and seem to be incapable of discerning values. Over the last 2 weeks I have reread all my watercolor books, color theory and drawing books.  I made color charts, value scales and tested all my watercolors for transparency and staining characteristics.  I took on as a student a very nice person who wants to learn watercolor. 
(Teaching is the best teacher?)
I signed up for 2 watercolor workshops in the U.S. and made plane reservations. (Any one else going to the Charles Reid workshop in South Carolina or the Pat Weaver in Oklahoma?)
Today I really wanted to paint something besides little pie-shaped swatches of watercolor, so I pulled out the Yupo again :-) and did this quick painting (?) of the same girl I did a drawing of a few weeks ago.  Yupo is so fun. And, magically, in the mail, I received a wonderful package from a wonderful artist full of info about how to use Yupo!
Thank you Hillary!!
I know what I will be doing tonight!

Also, something else I have been preoccupied with... my baby daughter began her mandatory service as a soldier in the IDF a little over a week ago.  
This is an extraordinary challenge for her,beyond the usual reasons,  as she only began learning Hebrew about 5  years ago.  But, she has gone in with a good attitude and is really moved by feeling a part of something larger than herself.  


Sandy said...

I don't know much about watercolor, because I'm doing tutorials and trying to learn as well, but heck, I think this is beautiful!

adebanji said...

Great sensitive piece!

What a great opportunity to have a workshop with Charles Reid!

Cathy Gatland said...

What a lovely portrait - I'm surprised you're feeling so incapable, it doesn't look like it to me... how I wish I could join you at the Charles Reid workshop!


Nice watercolor painting.

Naval Langa

Adam Cope said...

hello carol

returning your visit :-)

IMO : the last twenty minute wc figure in last posting is better as 1. done from life , not photo & 2. done in the direct manner ie no second takes or going back over wet patches (hence no aurioles). But this is a personal opinion.

Charles Reid will make you work on the direct manner.

to get back into values, paint using only neutral tint in the direct manner ie right first time. by the time you've down twenty, those values should be working...try one going from white to black (traditional wc) then paint the same subject again but second time going from black first going through the greys working towards the lighter then ending in white. Sometimes in wc, the problem is that people can see the values but are hopping backwards & forewards (which the medium basically doesn't like).

Personally I like your place-based artwork as these blogs are windows onto other parts of the world aren't they?

Paint well
Kind Regards

Hillary Miller said...

Carol, this painting on yupo is beautiful - fresh and alive. George James has nothin' on you, but I hope you like the DVD anyways. Erika took a Reid workshop and I bet she'd guarantee you'll love it.

I can't imagine sending my child off to the military. She looks so young, sweet and innocent! I wish her, you and all of Israel peace and prosperity!

Joanne said...

Liked your sketch like your painting. I understand your frustration. I too am painting with most of it ending up in the garbage. Also working on value sketches and composition in an effort to improve my work.

Teaching is a great way for the teacher to learn. I am learning so much through teaching. It will be great for you.

Ken Goldman said...

I think this is a beautiful portrait; it really has a feel of Yupo. I look forward to seeing what you end up doing after C Reid. I took a couple of workshops from him in the late 80's. He's a very nice man and a great teacher.
My best wishes go with your daughter in the IDF and with Israel.

Carol Feldman said...

Thank you Sandy and Naval for your very nice compliments. Much appreciated!

Adebanji and Cathy, thank you and yes, I am very excited about the Reid workshop. Running across a book of his in 1999 was what got me interested in trying watercolor in the first place. I guess I am finally feeling as though I can take advantage of what he has to offer.

Adam. What a gift! Thank you for your comments and insights. I found your wonderful site and blog after I had already made arrangements for the workshops in the U.S. I wish I could come to yours this summer, but my budget is exhausted. I love your part of France and also have seen and am moved by the cave artwork. Next year is a definite possibility!

Hillary, thank you again for the DVD! I began watching it and had to keep starting over because I wanted to paint at the same time I was watching and couldn't keep up! What fun!

Joanne, thank you for coming by and commenting. I just had my 2nd lesson for my student, and I have to agree with you. Teaching something really makes me think about how I approach something. I think it will be as good for me as for her. By the way, you have an interesting blog!!

Ken, thank you again for stopping at my blog again, and for your supportive words. I am honored!

To all - thank you for the good wishes for my daughter. It is hard handing her to the army for 2 years, but I feel very good about what the experience is giving back to her.

Edward Burton said...

Wonderful painting, Carol.

Sheila said...

Wow... I'm going to HAVE to try yupo. This is beautiful!!!!

James Parker said...

Carol...this is simply a great piece...I love everything about it. I wish the best for you and your daughter...and look for the day we can take "military" out of the dictionary.

toby said...

they're both gorgeous :)

laura said...

Your daughter's a beautiful girl--so youthful and exuberant. It gives one hope for the future of this old world! ;-)
And your painting is stunning--the eyes, the lips, the colors and energy. Going back to basics has really inspired you!

Pattie Wall said...

Lovely watercolor portrait, Carol! I've heard that Charles Reid gives a wonderful workshop.