January 12, 2021 – Monet’s Garden April Rain in Giverny, Photo to Oil to Watercolors through Three Decades, Part 4 – Learning Lessons Doing Repetition Variations

Previously, in Part 3 of this mini series, I showcased my 1st watercolor (seen below) keyed off an original oil of 2001, itself keyed off an original photo of the same year. I know I’ve got the version numbers reversed in terms of when I painted them. A goof up uploading the pics of the paintings to Fine Art America on my part 😏 But, maybe, for the lesson for me I’m writing about in this post, just as well, lol!

Though, when I practice repainting the same figure in my sketch book, like a person on a surfboard, I’m first trying to get the image to look decent 😊 and second seeing what surprises arise as I do each variation. These surprises are usually in the realm of posture or gesture suggesting some emotion or feeling, and those often become more important to me than accuracy to the original image (often a photo or old painting).

Similarly, I’m doing a short series of hearts I might offer closer to Valentines Day here locally, if anything’s open or available (if not, I’ll hold them for next year), and I’m seeing a similar lesson, but in slight variation.

Like my figure practice work, I need “something” that looks at least a little like a heart, lol! ❤️ Yet, I also want them slightly different from each other – in color, texturally, and in some intangible manner. What I’m finding with these is niche visual patterns I like and think work well yet are repeatable with variations. Some variation-ideas are presenting themselves to me slowly, with each new variation, suggesting shapes and forms I hadn’t contemplated to begin with at all! I’ll eventually show them later into February I think 😊

Now, with these two watercolor samples, themselves variations off a 2001 oil of mine, which is off a 2001 photo I took in Giverny, France, what’s emerging is something entirely different and unexpected.

From a probably predictable sense of boredom, repeating the same motif, I’m forced to improvise my technique to stay interested. I thought just switching from oil to watercolor alone would be enough. It’s not. And I still plan on doing a gouache (in-progress) and an acrylic! So we’ll see how far this goes.

But the interesting surprising thing to me is – as I loosen up more and more in implementation, I’m reminded of – visually and with memories – how I painted with oils in the early to mid 2000s.

Layering, scumbling, scrubbing, stabbing, layers over layers. Of bridges.

What’s different is, this time, I’m varying my images with varying mediums – watercolors, gouache, acrylics, and maybe even eventually oil.

I think, when I next post again in this little series, I’ll have my gouache, and it’s beginning to look more and more like Walking Bridge Zilker Park above, at least in terms of texture & expressiveness.

And I do think too, as I get past the rustiness of old painting habits + combine that with the innovations I’m discovering in all the above mediums I’ve been trying since oil, there may be some interesting pieces. I hope so anyway 😊

Plus, as per the tweet below, my digital image work off my originals will also give rise to new physical art work I can do. It’s a nice interactive loop —

And then, I believe, I’ll be ready to do something combining my new love of figure work, with new expressiveness particular to all these wonderful mediums now so abundantly available (in numbers of colors and forms, ie, brush pens, tubes, pans etc) not available to me even a couple decades ago.

It’s an exciting time to be creative I think 💕

Take care everyone, stay healthy!

Adan
This series – Monet’s Garden April Rain in Giverny –
https://felipeadanlerma.com/tag/monets-garden-april-rain-in-giverny/

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Direct link to the image in above tweet at Fine Art America –
https://felipeadan-lerma.pixels.com/featured/monets-garden-april-rain-in-giverny-watercolor-v1-digital-felipe-adan-lerma.html

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Thanks again, everyone! 😊

Adan

Artist self portrait - photo of Felipe Adan Lerma on converted railway track bike ferry for the Island Line Trail connecting mainland Vermont to South Hero on Lake Champlain.

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Amazon Author Page – https://amzn.to/2YpgyUf
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3 comments

    • Oh yes! We’ll have to see what we’ve each done! Mine are gonna be simple straightforward heart shapes, hoping I can show/sell a few at the Buda Mercantile, if I can show them on a table & social distance; we’re in Cat 5 here in Austin, not good 😔 But still wanna do some hearts. As you say, tis the season 💕 😊

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