Sunday, 20 June 2010

Watercolour Lessons from Nature

"And why are you anxious about what to wear? Consider the
    lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they
    spin. And yet I say to you, that even Solomon in all his glory
    is not arrayed like one of these".
                                                                                 - Matthew 6:28-29
Behind my cottage is a field full of daisies.  This morning I wandered through the many heads of white touching a few as I passed, feeling their shape and  delicate petals between my fingers. I couldn't help but think about the garden I am designing. How I choose where I put colour. How I worry about  using too little or too much water to keep each plant healthy. And how I remove weeds to ensure the plants I so carefully chose can survive.
And yet here is this field  full of beauty growing completely naturally. I have watched the colours change and merge with the seasons  randomly creating patterns.
How  we learn from nature.
When I work in watercolour I see shapes of colour. I am aware that too much planning can ruin a wonderful result. Too little and the result may  not be successful either. Patterns formed by random placement of colour can break up an otherwise orderly and almost boring composition. Too much water and we could dilute the pigment far too much.Too little and we could have easily moved to another medium where water isn't required.  The " weeds" in a watercolour are the flaws or watermarks which others may see as a crisis whilst I see them as interesting features.
Seeing beauty around us no matter how simple or complex is probably the very best lesson we all need to learn as artists.Seeing it, appreciating it and understanding what makes it so.


Cristina Dalla Valentina said...

... and simply enchanting is this your painting, as always is your art...

AK said...

Jean your work is brilliant. Every one of them.

Jean Haines SWA, SFP said...

Thank you so much Christina.

Jean Haines SWA, SFP said...

AK, that is so kind,thank you so much for being here.