An illustration someone commissioned me for. (I think it’s a buyers invite for the new collection)
I wasn’t sure about posting this one, since it was so out of my usual style and comfort zone, and I think it looks a little clumsy. (They were happy with it thank god.)
When using water colours your hand needs to have a really light, casual touch. Almost as if the colour just fell off your brush accidentally to make this picture out of the swirl of paint. Another difficulty is there is no margin for error with watercolours. It either works or it doesn’t.
To make matters worse, I was using acrylics (dries quickly, sets like oils). I really must buy a proper paint set.
I’m too controlling to execute this kind of style with ease, so it was a bit of a struggle. (But a good exercise I think)
I haven’t used watercolours, well since my 10th standard art exam.
You know, my art teachers in school were fucking cheaters.
They made us practice this one still-life, over and over and over again in the weeks/months leading up to the exams. It was a ketchup bottle with some other crap on a hideous drape of purple fabric.
I do love that the approach to art in school was to ‘practice’ a drawing, and then regurgitate it, like a performance, for the final exam.
The teachers also had their own tuitions classes. So their pupils were also taught a secret second still life. Anyone who didn’t pay for private classes wouldn’t be able to ‘practice’ this secret second still life. (I didn’t take classes for art, my mother was pretty sufficient. More so than the teachers, I thought.)
So when we walked into the examination room, I was rather surprised to find a new still-life set up in the corner. A kettle, some mugs and a fruit against a much less offensively mis-matched drape. A relatively easy composition compared to the one we had been ‘practicing’.
The students could pick one still life or the other. After months of interminable boredom of the one still life we’d been forced to paint, I was perfectly happy to take a punt on the new one. If I couldn’t do it, well, it couldn’t be half as bad as drawing that stupid frickkin ketchup bottle (Maggie; Other brands are available) for the umpteenth time.
Luckily it turned out well.
Two of the teachers later asked me, deeply suspicious,
“Who do you take tuitions from?”
“My mother paints”
“Accha. Very good still life.”
I felt as smug as a cat.
HAH! Foiled you cheater teachers! How about them apples??