Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Highlights From New York City

"Take risks:  if you win, you will be happy;
if you lose, you will be wise."

The artist is one who must have the courage to fail. To challenge ourselves, to be brave and to experience different things is the only way we grow and stay fresh. If our work is not exciting to ourselves, how can we expect it to be so for others? Nobody likes to fail and look like a fool, but the only way to evolve is by experimenting, stepping outside of our comfort zone and leaving behind the safety of what is already known. The habit of learning from new experiences and from our mistakes keeps life and painting exciting. 

My painting demonstration at the grand opening of the new Dick Blick store in New York City on August 22nd was a huge success. 

"Of all the people I have ever known,
those who have pursued their dreams and failed
have lived a much more fulfilling life than those
who have put their dreams on a shelf for fear of failure."

After two months of planning, everything fell into place ...
I packed all my paintings and cards in this Pissaro Portfolio that I got ages ago. I never used before and it was the perfect case for what I needed.

I LOVE this watercolor bag! It's a Debbie Rankin Design and I've used the heck out of it for years. The bottom pocket is for your palette so it stays flat and everything else you need (and everything I'm packing here), always fits neatly inside. Great for every watercolor situation. I strongly recommend it!

The whole New York City experience went so well and WAS SO MUCH FUN! The crowd was so engaged and encouraging. They really were some of the nicest folks I've ever met!! 

I completed four paintings on Yupo paper.  Here I am doing my first one, rainbow feathers. It was a hit! Notice how I pre-mix all of my colors and each one has it's own brush, eliminating time wasting washing and mixing. Watercolor sits on the surface of Yupo paper, so you don't lose 30% of the brightness like you do on regular rag watercolor paper. At one point, I dropped my brush and got purple pigment all over the place. It was a perfect opportunity to show how forgiving Yupo is. I just calmly wiped the mistake back to clean bright white paper to everyone's amazement. 

"Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions.  All life is an experiment.  The more experiments you make, the better.  What if they are a little course, and you may get your coat soiled or torn?  What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice.  Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble."  ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Jackie, the lady here in the hat, was my self-appointed, volunteer promoter. She spent the whole time giving out cards and samples and signing up people for a giveaway. She talked to everyone who passed by and encouraged people to stop and take a look at what I was doing. She came up with countless great slogans about working on Yupo. I wish I could remember some now.

This lady, Ingrid, used my little camera throughout the demos and took lots and lots of pictures! 

Here's the second demo I did. There were lots of Ewws and Ahhs on this one too. (It was music to my ears).

The subject of the third painting I demonstrated was Fuschia flowers.
Here I talked about experimenting with values, composition, color mixing
and complimentary colors.

The final painting I demonstrated was the wet-in-wet background
on this Bird of Paradise.

Are you in the mood for something different?
Ready to experiment and take a risk?
Why not give Yupo paper a try?

Because the watercolor pigment can always be wiped back to clean paper, I think it's the most forgiving, the most exciting and the most stress free way to work in watercolor!

Fear of the unknown and of failure or embarrassment could have kept me from embarking on this New York City adventure. I am really happy I took the leap of faith and I am so much richer in so many ways from the whole experience.

"This nation was built by people who took risks -
pioneers who were not afraid of the wilderness,
business men who were not afraid of failure,
scientists who were not afraid of the truth,
thinkers who were not afraid of progress,
dreamers who were not afraid of action."
Brooks Atkinson

Thanks for stopping by and please let me know you did!!
As always, your comments are most appreciated!

X ♥  O

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