Saturday, September 13, 2014

Beach Girl with Red Shovel and White Hat Watercolor Painting in Progress
As soon as I saw this little girl on the beach, I knew that I wanted to paint her! I was struck by the child's activity, methodically and purposefully digging the sand, plopping it into piles, and gazing periodically at the ocean.
She was wearing a yellow striped bathing suit and surrounded by nothing but sand from my vantage point. I started to paint her that way, but quickly wanted a more vibrant bathing suit and a rich cobalt blue sky. I love painting shadows on something white. As you may know from my earlier blog posts, I'm using the mingling technique for her hat with mingled permanent rose, verditer blue, and mineral violet watercolor paints.
Once finished the bathing suit, I worked on the flesh tones, facial features, clouds, richer sky colors, along with texture and color to the sand.
At first, I was going to leave the ocean as a distant shore, planning on having the painting focus mainly on the child. But the more I looked at it, the more it seemed like she was sitting in a desert! I really missed showing the ocean, especially with lots of waves!
Once the ocean was painted, I concentrated on refining the rest of the painting, lightening the sand piles where the sun hits them, toning down the sand a bit, and deepening the color of the water at the horizon to give it added depth.
I haven't shown all of the steps that it took to get to the finished painting which took me three weeks to complete. I just wanted to give you a bit of insight into my watercolor painting process.
I hope that you enjoyed this little taste of my decision-making process with this painting!