My partner and I have decided to market our home and so all my tubes of paint and canvases have been packed away for the move. I am an artist to my core and so when I considered what would be handy and compact I nostalgically thought of those little metal tins of watercolors my mother taught us the fundamentals of painting. It seemed such an easy option when I first considered it; however those days of finding a little tin of paint at the local art supply store is long gone.
I searched and researched to find a quality little tin of paints I could easily take to the beach and capture the wildlife and dazzling turquoise water of the Gulf of Mexico. What I purchased on my last venture to the Blick store in Philadelphia was a smart little travel case of watercolors in half pans made in France by Sennelier. I liked it so much and the honey based colors are so much more vibrant than my other watercolors that they almost seem as brilliant as acrylics. I decided to invest in the tin of 48 half pans. A very beautiful and smart tin arrived at my home in January and I naively thought of all those crisp and bright winter days perfect for relearning working with paint in pans.
Well that was several weeks ago and as we have all experienced the weather together we know there has been precious few bright sunlit days and those I fear were used prepping our house for the future move. When there was a free afternoon the light was weak at best and so I looked at my other art media that has lain dormant in my re-acquaintance with painting.
Pencils are an item we all learned to master with our early school days of writing our ABC’s. We would travel from our home in Virginia to visit our family in Pennsylvania (a six hour road trip one way) and colored pencils were a great way to pass the time. Colored pencils are an easy introduction to art in our primary years, but needn’t be left there. There are several companies that produce a lovely product one may stay with colored pencils entirely.
Pencils were something that I enjoyed drawing on black paper because then the jewel tones really shine out like satin embroidery on black velvet. I think they are the perfect distraction from the lack of sunshine because they are all the more gorgeous on a dark and dreary afternoon. To be perfectly honest I am drawn to the dark and mysterious in literature and in art as well. My teenage rainy summer afternoons were spent with the writings of Edgar Allan Poe and the wood block prints of Albrecht Durer are something I still go to for inspiration. Gustav Klimt however, I believe mixed the dark with a gilded light better than any other artist I can think of and it is to his masterpieces I thought of when I pulled my pencils into service.
Rain may fall and even turn to ice but the bulbs we planted are all starting to peek up out of the soil. The bold and brave little crocus has the very first blooms of the season and they were my inspiration in nature to the Earth waking to the cold and gray spring.
March 2nd is our next full moon we may enjoy the cool moonlight over our still sleeping landscape and I reveal the next installment of The Guild. In her prison Cygnus may find inspiration from a long forgotten muse; what inspires you in these days of rain and clouds?
My drawing was drawn with Faber Castell Polychromos pencils purchased at Blick in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Pencils are available in tins or individually in open stock. CARAN d’ACHE Swiss made Supracolor II Soft Gold pencil provided the gold accents and their Luminance Light Malachite Green pencil added to the blue-green highlights.
If the weather makes you feel as if the sun is a distant memory than why not reacquaint yourself with art. It can be as simple as a box of colored pencils and a blank tablet from the grocery store. We enjoyed that quiet time after lunch in kindergarten, a big blank sheet of paper before us we could map our own secret country. The more we are responsible for doesn’t lessen our longing for a little quiet time; it only enforces our need for it. If a spa day isn’t in your budget, or a tropical vacation; art might be an easy therapy because that blank sheet of paper in front of you is yours entirely and we’re not likely to have that much seclusion on any sunny beach. Rainbows and unicorns are always welcome.