Lessons in Watercolor

This is a guest post from Lindi Haws of Love-The-Day.com

This summer, I attended the Michael’s Makers Summit in Napa, California as a Michael’s Maker where Creativebug was a sponsor. Lucky for me, I was able to take a watercolor class from Yao Chang IN PERSON. I had never tried watercolor or any type of painting class before, and was excited to give it a try. I quickly learned that graphic design comes much easier to me than watercolor. I still enjoyed the art and most importantly, loved seeing Yao’s passion for creativity, her paints and how colors and water interact as a medium. I left the conference, by far the worse painter of the group, but inspired to learn more about this fun form of creativity. I came home and took Yao’s Beginning Watercolor class and am now in the middle of her Intermediate Watercolor class on Creativebug. I’ve loved both sessions so far and have learned a few things about both watercolor and myself that I thought I would share:

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1. I Am Not Yao Chang. 

Although I really, really, really want to be, I do not posses the incredible talent that Yao does. I have though, been inspired by the time it took her to become what she is, and am really excited to put some time and effort into this new hobby. My paintings may never look like hers, but she has instilled in me a love for the art and an excitement that I can get better! And her class has given me some incredible tools, tips and guidance to do that.

2. Practice, Practice, Practice

I’m just a few weeks into her classes and have already seen HUGE improvement from my first experimental paintings to what I produce now. And I know it can only get better from here! At the Summit, Yao noticed that I forced, drew or outlined shapes into being and mentioned that I should lose the need for control (yep, total control freak here) while painting. I watched as she created images and shapes with just brush strokes and have been practicing that technique myself. While I’m not great at it, I’m excited that with practice, I will get better. And I love that her classes give so many examples of those techniques and strokes.

3. Incorporate Watercolor Into What You Do Best

So watercolor for me has been exciting because I look forward to combing these budding skill with skills I already have, say graphic design, party planning or printables. I don’t ever intend to paint large watercolor paintings, but am exciting to use watercolor to say, create watercolor party favors or watercolor a pumpkin for Halloween. I hope to incorporate watercolor into projects I am already working on. Like this, watercolor ‘Thankful For You’ free printable which is available as a download HERE if you like. More than anything, I am so happy I tried something new, learned a new skill and have an opportunity to improve!

 

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23 Comments

  1. My sister has several degrees in art and she loves watercolors. I think it’s such a pretty expression of art.

  2. Good for you for trying something new! I don’t think anything art related would ever be my thing since I have zero talent, but I love that free printable for fall.

  3. I am the opposite of artistic. I’m anti-artistic. I mean, I can’t even draw a straight line or a stick figure. But, reading this, makes me wonder if I really just worked at, if maybe I could find some hidden talent I didn’t know I had… maybe? This has inspired me to give it a try, though!

  4. Good for you for trying this! I admire painting but am not very good at it. I love that you are incorporating it into your party planning and graphics. Very nice!
    🙂
    Traci

  5. I am not artistic enough to do a painting, but I do enjoy using watercolors from time to time to make backgrounds for cardmaking. Your watercolor printable is just beautiful. Thank you for offering the free printable!

  6. I used to love painting with watercolors when I was younger. There is just something so beautiful about the look you can achieve with them. I haven’t painted in years but this makes me want to give it another try!

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