Start With a Background

Usually I want to have an image in my mind or a picture or object in front of me before starting a painting or drawing. Sometimes it can be fun to make a background and see where that background leads me.

I tried the technique of splattering some watercolor paint on the paper and then spraying a fine mist of water onto the paint and letting the paint spread. The demonstration I saw used this method for an ocean scene.


When the background dried, I wasn’t seeing ocean. The longer I looked at it this background brought to my mind hanging bunches of wisteria blossoms. We have a large wisteria plant in front of our porch and it is not yet in bloom but is loaded with buds. It won’t be long! Here is a shot of last year’s early blossoms.


So my background became the setting for wisteria blossoms for my painting.


Next time you are not sure what to paint, make a background and see where it leads you!

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