The funny thing is that my youngest who is a first year at UC Davis, loves to paint and create with paper, fabric, needlefelting, and more, and as she packed up all of her belongings for the dorm, she was sad to not have any paint to bring with her, and so, I told her, take all that you need from the new set of Acryl-gouache I had purchased. She took a lot of colors, mostly the primaries and some beautiful purples and oranges, and so for my painting, I had to choose from the ones left behind.
I chose a flesh color, a brown, a green, an ochre, brick red, and blue. It turns out that this is a really great way to focus on the composition and content, versus choosing colors (which I am still really not great at).
The call for entries was for "children as spectators of a live performance", and so while brainstorming, I thought of the Nutcracker, and for some reason, thought there was a dancing bear. I googled to see if there was such a thing, and sure enough, the Boston Ballet is famous for it's Nutcracker dancing bear.
I sketched and sketched and added lots of little ones, and thought, wouldn't it be great to add stuffed animals, too? And what would the kids be doing while watching a performance? Well, it was pretty darned fun just to sketch those ideas out, and I didn't think too much about it as I just wanted to dig in and start painting.
I must say, painting was a LOT OF FUN! To be constrained to a limited palette, having to mix colors for skintones, clothes, hairstyles, and more, well, it was a great experiment for me and I learned so much from it. Acryl-gouache did dry quicker than watercolors and gouache, but I was able to manage it better than acrylics. I kept adding water to dilute the paints (maybe this isn't what you're supposed to do?) and then went back in to add more opacity. It was a real trial-and-error kind of experience and as I added more paint and detail, I learned more about the opacity of the paints and how to adjust for contrast and such. I plan to keep experimenting with this new medium for sure.
So today, I found out the wonderful news that my illustration was one of 38 selected to exhibit at the “Children-Spectators” exhibit at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair this year! I am still so shocked!
La Danse de l’Ours Bleu et de la Fille
I am enjoying a celebratory Peet’s coffee and then back to work-work.
Hope everyone’s well and thank you for visiting!