Geranium way (sketch)

Another fast and rough sketch in the 9 x 12″ Raffine… in preparation for doing another painting in watercolor or oils. This one was painted with a half inch flat and a #12 round. Late afternoon on a tropical California side street.

In fact, it’s right next door to this house Capistrano Fence which I painted about a month ago.

The 20th anniversary issue of Watercolor magazine came in the mail the other day … oh, my the inspiration. If you haven’t seen it, go get it at the newsstand. The work is just outstanding … it makes you want to vow not to let a day go by without painting.


  1. Jana Bouc
    September 23, 2006

    This is a “real” painting, not just a sketch! You’ve got some interesting texture in the whites and lights in the foreground and fabulous dark/light contrast and values. The composition is superb–draws you right in and the colors are so vibrant. It’s perfect! Has everything a good painting should have, with the subtle background, exciting foreground and middle ground, interesting subjects, line variety… And it’s all in the Raffine… Are you liking it better than the Aquabee?

  2. Laura
    September 23, 2006

    This is one of the best things you’ve done, Karen. Really crisp shapes, robust value contrasts, deft use of the medium to render light effects. Every day in every way… ;D.

  3. Karen
    September 23, 2006

    Jana, so far I’m liking it better than the Aquabee – but I’ve only done big brush sorts of things. I’m going to have to see how it performs with life drawing and ink and other things. But for this kind of painting, it really gives me a lot of room to slosh without buckling or bleeding through.

    Laura, thank you so very much – I can even see a change in my style from a month ago using similar subject matter. I think the bigger brushes are making the difference in how I treat the subject material.

  4. Miyuki Mouse
    September 23, 2006

    Hi Karen.

    Just did a binge viewing of all your posts that I’ve missed recently. These watercolours are great! Love the vibrant hues, and great use of the “white of the paper”.

    Looking at your work I imagine you’re quite a patient person. I’m not, hence most of my attempts at watercolour end in failure 😉

  5. Karen
    September 23, 2006

    Hi Miyuki … I can be patient sometimes, but not always. The Sycamore Grove painting took less than a half hour – more like 20 minutes – I wasn’t watching the clock. Some watercolor styles demand slow, careful painting, but other styles require that you work fast – I’m more comfortable with fast than slow right now.

  6. carole
    September 24, 2006

    I love the light and shadow in this, and the colour. I agree that this is a great painting in itself.

  7. Linda
    September 24, 2006

    I’ll echo what Laura said in particular — this is one of your best! The contrasts simply sing.

  8. lin
    September 24, 2006

    Karen — I am so glad you like the Raffine! And this sketch is tremendous!!! I LOVE the way the light is SO BRIGHT against the contrasted shadows !! BEAUTIFUL!

  9. Pamela
    September 24, 2006

    I don’t want to get depressed.

    —–I started so late in life, and there are just SO MANY diversions that keep me from painting.

  10. Toni
    September 24, 2006

    I agree with Laura. You just keep getting better and better. your quick sketches are more like finished paintings.

  11. clare
    September 26, 2006

    Hi Karen, This is so, so wonderful, and not just a sketch!!! I enjoyed my visit here and
    only wish I had more time to browse around, maybe later.

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