Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Creative Archaeology

(click on image to enlarge)

Mayan Sunrise
(repainted Mach 27 to better reflect pigment shifting effect of painting with clear water)
Watercolour and crayon, Photoshop
©2010 Charlene Brown
This week on Making a Mark Katherine Tyrrell asked us to identify, rank, and assign scores to our personal top watercolour art instruction books. I’m sure I wasn’t the only painter who took this as permission to spend most of yesterday just reading and looking at the pictures in my personal stack of these big beautiful books… .

I think there are two quite different questions to ask in evaluating watercolour instruction books: … Do they contain good explanations of the technicalities and idiosyncrasies of the medium? …Do they have lots of fantastic ideas?
I have a nagging feeling I should be asking the first question more, but in fact have always been more interested in the ideas in books – provided they have enough actual information that any resulting ‘successful’ paintings are the product of more than just amazing good luck.
Today’s picture ‘Mayan Sunrise’ (the ruins at Tulum again) is my interpretation of Experiment 62 in my personal favourite ‘Watercolor Bold & Free,’ by Lawrence C. Goldsmith. It bears no resemblance to Mr Goldsmith’s illustration of Experiment 62, but I love the concept – would you believe ‘painting with clear water’ – and plan to try a whole different version of it, or perhaps another one of the experiments in this book, in future creative archaeology paintings.