Friday, August 8, 2014

Summer Poppies In Watercolour ~ Breakthrough Or Failure?

"The things that interest me most about painting are whatever is difficult or unexplored, rather than what I can already do. Following that path results in failures once in a while, but it's much more rewarding when I make a breakthrough."  Quang Ho


Poppies, Watercolour In-Progress by Laura Leeder, August 2014

Here is the start of the poppy painting that I hinted at in my last post.  I'm using a photo taken of my neighbors ruffled poppies as my inspiration and guide. Initially, I was overwhelmed by the complexity of these ruffled petals.

After some consideration I decided that a stylized approach would solve this problem and also suited the mood that I want to convey.  That of summer poppies, happily dancing and swaying in the breeze.  It seems that when I take this approach, a mental shift occurs and I allow myself to be more relaxed in my painting, and some fun exploration occurs.  And shouldn't that be a part of what summer is about? 














Here is what I did.  I used two main poppy blossom shapes and laid cut-outs of these onto my transfer paper.  After tracing them onto the paper, I then re-worked each blossom, varying the shapes, eliminating more petals and simplifying the lines through out.  This is a clever and simple approach in handling a complex and busy photo or scene.  

(and now back to the beach!)  

Thanks for stopping by,
Laura Leeder, Watercolour Artist
Creston, BC in the heart of the Kootenays

My artwork can be purchased on-line through my website or Etsy Shop:
My Website: www.lauraleeder.com
Etsy Shop: www.etsy.com/ca/shop/lauraleedersart 

16 comments:

Win Dinn said...

Oh this looks like fun, Laura, and your last sentence sounds even better! Enjoy....:D

Debbie Nolan said...

Laura - this looks like you are off to a lovely start. I have a few orange Iceland poppies blooming in my garden. Love the way you have captured their free flowing personality. Hope you are enjoying the beach. Have a great week-end.

Mellowood Gallery said...

It is looking good Laura. I have some poppies that have so many petals they almost look like carnations. this approach might make them paintable. I will have to see if I can get some photos.
Have a good time at the beach!

Eileen said...

What a clever idea you had about making cut outs.

Christiane Kingsley said...

Great idea, Laura. This will be a beautiful painting!

Celia Blanco said...

I love seeing the beginning stages of your work Laura. It is a fun composition!
Enjoy the rest of your summer, I will be away myself until September.

Laura Leeder said...

Debbie, my husband and I used to have a large patch of Iceland poppies when we lived in Alberta, Canada. (a good 9 years ago) We adored them! I think it's too hot for them here in the Creston Valley.

Laura Leeder said...

Christiane, thanks for your vote of confidence!

Laura Leeder said...

Celia, have a wonderful break, summer will be over before we know it!

Judy said...

A very clever approach to the complexity of the poppy flowers! Looks great already!

Laura Leeder said...

Many thanks Judy!

Laura Leeder said...

Win, I treasure my time at the beach...very relaxing for me!

Laura Leeder said...

Val, give it a try. I enjoyed laying out the shapes into a pleasing composition and you can re-use them!

Laura Leeder said...

Eileen, my cut out idea was probably influenced by you and Win with your stencils!

Laura Moore said...

Fabulous approach Laura. You are definitely onto a winner already. Enjoy your summer. xx

Laura Leeder said...

Thank You Laura! Your comments and support are always appreciated!

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