Saturday 28 October 2017

Back to the sketchbook

I was catching up with last Sunday's newspapers this afternoon (OK, it's Saturday and there'll be another pile to start wading through tomorrow!). In the Sunday Times I read a really interesting article by Andrew Marr. He says he's always astonished when people say to him that painting must be so relaxing. He finds it glorious, exciting and infuriating - but never relaxing! I have to agree but what it is, is absorbing. I can lose hours of my day when I'm busy with my paper and paints!

During yesterday's stroll round the garden I took a photo of some white Cosmos, still in full bloom despite the lateness of the season. Last night, in front of the TV, I had a go at making a sketch from the photograph. It's difficult to capture the delicacy of the petals using a fine liner pen but it was all I could use balancing sketchbook and iPad on my lap!

Today, out in my workroom, I added a few shadows on the petals and a wash of watercolour around the flowers to emphasise their paleness relative to the background. As you can see, I was too impatient for the paint to dry before I photographed the page!

On the following page I took a rubbing from a very old, cardboard quilting template I had made many years ago. The rubbing was made with a solid graphite stick and I painted a deep indigo and olive watercolour wash around it.

I introduced a little interest in the wash by flicking water and rubbing alcohol onto the paint while it was still damp. Finally, I cropped the edge of the Cosmos page following the diagonal curvy line of the stems and I'm pleased with how the second page is partially revealed.

It may not be great art but it is absorbing. I recommend it as just the thing to take your mind off any worries you might have! Who needs therapy?

Bye for now - Linda x


  1. I love the interplay between the green and indigo. The curved page edge is wonderful. I am saying goodbye to the garden, too. I always find fall so sad. I want to bring all my favorite plants indoors until spring. Time to photograph and capture their beauty before the snow flies.

  2. You're right! Who needs therapy when you've got indigo and olive, a very pleasing little cosmos and a rubbing plate. On a gardening note, my little patch is looking better now than it has since the spring. Fickle seasons!

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