Backyard Cardinal and watercolor

I snapped a cute photo of a female Cardinal on my backyard feeder. I thought it would be fun to paint this lovely bird and share my watercolor process with you.

Happy Sunday!

My painting inspiration and backyard capture… a lovely Cardinal ❤

Female Cardinal photo

I started thinking about the colors I would need for this painting while viewing the photo on my laptop.  Below is a little test sheet with notes on the colors mixed and used.

 

color testing

Color mixing notes (Daniel Smith watercolors)
Orange:  Quinacridone Rose and Hansa Yellow light
Brown:  Yellow Ochre and Payne’s Gray
Red:  Deep Scarlet and Payne’s Gray
Purple:  Ultramarine Blue, Quinacridone Rose, and Payne’s Gray

The initial sketch and first light wash

initial wash - female cardinal

With the first wash I put down enough color to define the overall shape and create a nice base to build on.

I just love her gorgeous feather tiara. 🙂  She looks like the queen of the backyard.

 

Second wash - female cardinal The second wash starts to bring things to life as I build up color and add some darker values. As you can see, there is still more work that needs to be done.

 

Female Cardinal 3rd wash

The third wash builds up even more color and includes the addition of a background. I thought it was finished at this point. But after the painting dried I decided it needed a few more small details. I used a black micron pen with a very small tip (.005) and a white gel pen for the additional details.

 

Female Cardinal watercolor

I also brightened up the green a bit in the background before calling this one done.

Watercolor Tips:

  • Test out your colors on scrap paper first and write down notes on color mixing.
  • When sketching on watercolor paper, be careful to use a light touch. I recently used some new paper and found that it easily became bruised from my pencil markings. I realized the problem only after I started painting…..lesson learned and a good reminder going forward.

I hope you enjoyed seeing my watercolor process and are inspired to create art.

Thank you for stopping by and following along. Until next time, share a smile and do something you love.

Happy Painting!

Patty Anne

Patty Anne Art on Instagram

Patty Anne Art

 

Backyard Cutie

This little beauty visits the feeder often. I was pretty excited when he dropped by and I was able to snap a few photos of him.

tufted titmouse - lovely

I love those big eyes! It looks like he is checking out what’s for dinner.

 

Tufted Titmouse watercolor
Tufted Titmouse watercolor

I was inspired to paint my little backyard friend. I decided to keep things simple and just paint him perched on a branch. I added a fun splashy background to finish up the painting. I may have had a little too much fun with that background but oh well… 😉

Paper:  7×10 inch Arches watercolor block
Daniel Smith watercolor paint:
Cobalt blue, Ultramarine Blue, Quinacridone Burnt Orange, and Yellow Ochre

Additional details added with a .005 black micron pen and a white gel pen.

 

tufted titmouse with seed

In this photo,  it looks like he approves and will take his food to go. 🙂
Another happy fella at the backyard feeder.

Watercolor Tips:

Over time the tip of your brushes and pens can wear down. Be sure to replace those that have become worn.

I still get a little uptight when a few paintings in a row don’t work out as planned. I’ve found the best thing for me is to hang in there, loosen up, and keep on going. The important thing to remember is to enjoy the process and have fun.

Thank you for stopping by and following along. I hope you enjoy seeing my work and are inspired to create art and do something fun. Until next time, have a great week.

Happy Painting!

Patty Anne

PattyAnneArt

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Backyard Nuthatch

A frequent visitor to my backyard is the sweet Nuthatch.  This cute little bird is always fun to watch balancing on the feeder or creeping around on a tree trunk in search of food.

Backyard Nuthatch photo

This guy was pretty vocal. I just love this pic. ❤

 

Nuthatch in a tree

This fella was on a mission bouncing around on a tree trunk. 🙂

 

White-breasted Nuthatch
Nuthatch watercolor

 

I decided to combine both of my photos for this painting and tried to capture the cute expression of the sweet Nuthatch in the first photo.

I started off with a light pencil sketch and then added a little detail with a black Micron pen. I continued with watercolor building up color and adding definition to my bird and branch.  At this point, I was quite happy and thought I was finished.

but …

Later I took a few photos of my painting and it became quite clear that it really needed more color. I decided to go for it and really punch up the blues.

Ahh.. that’s better. 🙂 That color boost really made a difference.

White-breasted Nuthatch final
Nuthatch watercolor 

Watercolor Tip:

Viewing a photo of your work can help you see where you need to add additional detail or more color.

I hope you enjoy seeing my art and my backyard friends. Thank you for stopping by and following along. Until next time, have a great week and do something you love!

Happy Painting!

Patty Anne

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PattyAnneArt

 

Simple Petals & Leaves

It is always fun to play and practice.

A few simple flowers and leaves with my favorite Dagger brush. ❤

For this practice, I limited the colors used and tried to limit the number of brush strokes on each flower. At first I was a little disappointed that I could not master the rose shape but what I realized after playing around a while is that I actually like the irregular shapes best.

Simple Roses
Simple Roses

Bud
I started at the base of the flower putting pressure on the brush and pulling up toward the top,  then the same thing on the other side to complete the bud shape.

Leaves
While the bud was still wet, I tried to cradle it with green leaves. Starting at the base with smaller strokes, I pulled upward to create little leaves on both sides.

Stem
The last step was simply painting the stem by starting at the base of the bud/leaves and pulling down to create a fine line.

 

Simple petals and leaves
Simple petals and leaves

I loosened up after a while and then tried some other playful shapes. I really like how they turned out.

 

Simple Roses and buds

For this practice piece, I added a blue sky and played a little more.
Nothing complicated, just a few joyful flowers. 🙂

I think it is important to allow yourself time to play…it helps keep things interesting and fun.

Rose buds
Rose buds –  6 x 9 inch watercolor on Bee paper

For this final painting, I kept things soft and loose. I really love this painting and plan on giving it to a very special couple.

I hope you enjoy seeing my work and are inspired to create art and do something you love. Thank you for stopping by and following along. Until next time, have a great week!

Happy Painting!

Patty Anne

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PattyAnneArt

Backyard Bluebird

This little bluebird stopped by for a visit recently.  Luckily I had my new camera in hand  when this little guy arrived. I did my best to contain my excitement long enough to snap a few pics of him. 🙂

Backyard Bluebird
Backyard Bluebird

 

I thought it would be fun to try painting my bluebird. I started with a light pencil sketch first, and then moved on to the eye and beak making sure to get the placement and details correct.

Bluebird watercolor
Bluebird watercolor

While working on the feathers, I like to dampen a small area of the paper with a little clean water.  Then I drop in a little paint and let the colors move and mingle. A gentle touch with a small brush seems to work well for painting the feathers on a small bird like this one.

I decided to try something a little different for the background and create a frame of color around my bird. It has taken a lot of painting for me to get comfortable trying different backgrounds. There are still times when I have to push worry out of the way and just go for it.

Tip – how to flatten your watercolor painting if the paper curls up or has buckled
After you have finished your painting and it is completely dry, you can flatten it by lightly wetting the back side of the paper with clean water and then setting a heavy book or two on top of it until it dries completely.

I hope you enjoy seeing my work and are inspired to create art and do something you love. Thank you for stopping by and following along. Until next time, have a great week! 🙂 ❤

Happy Painting!

Patty Anne

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Splashy Red Poppies

Watercolor fun splashing paint around.

Today I have 3 paintings inspired by watercolor artist, Jean Haines.

No sketching, just paint on paper.
Big shapes and lots of juicy color.

Red Poppies - 1
Red Poppies – 1

Trying to simply enjoy the painting process and play with color. ❤

The petals were painted with different shades of red. I dropped in more color here and there, big strokes and no fussing. While the petals were still wet, I painted the center of each flower blue. I encouraged the paint in the center of each flower to mingle with the petals by tilting the paper and also touching the center edge of the wet red petals with the blue paint.

A little clean water helped soften and ruffle the outer edges. I like how that turned out.

Red Poppies - 2
Red Poppies – 2

I connected the flowers in each painting by simply pulling a little red paint from flower to flower.

Red Poppies - 3
Red Poppies – 3

Each 6 x 9 inch painting came together quickly. It was fun to paint the same thing a few times in a row. I found that I learned a little something new with each painting.

I hope you enjoy seeing my work and are inspired to create art and do something you love. The Erin Hanson quote below inspires me, I hope it inspires you as well…

What if I fall?
Oh, but my darling, what if you fly?
-Erin Hanson

Thank you for stopping by and following along. Until next time, have a great week. 🙂

Happy Painting!

Patty Anne

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PattyAnneArt

Pink Tulips – watercolor

A Spring inspired post for you today with a few watercolor tulips.

Tulips make me a happy girl. ❤  I hope you enjoy them as well . 🙂

Soft Pink Tulip painted on 6 x 9 inch Bee paper.

I love the ruffled petals. When working on the background, I decided to also ruffle the edge of the background colors a bit. I really like how that worked out.

Pink Tulip
Soft Pink Tulip

 

Bright Pink Tulips painted on 6 x 9 inch Bee paper.

The greens and bright pinks work well together. I love that combination.

To create the soft distant tulips, I used the wet on wet technique. I simply wet the paper first with clean water and then while the paper was still wet, painted the general shape of tulips with a wet brush loaded with color. Then I continued dropping in more color to build up different areas.

Pink Tulips
Bright Pink Tulips

Watercolor Tips
– Build up color from light to dark

– Always have a tissue handy for those times when you drop too much color or too much water on your paper

– Mix it up and try something different
maybe a bold color, different brush, different paper, or an unusual color choice

I hope you are inspired to create art and do something you love. Thank you for stopping by and following along. Until next time, have a great week. 🙂

Happy Painting!

Patty Anne

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