Crow Black

Crow Black

Here we are in April already the clocks have gone forward and here in the UK we have an extra hour of daylight. Spring hasn't felt very spring-like though with day after day of rain and or drizzle. But we must grab our chances when the sun does appear.

Despite the weather, we had a lovely Easter with family around, music at our village concert. My eldest playing Jazz with friends he knew at playgroup. So good to see the young people they have all become, such a lot of joy and talent on show.

My week has been a weird one, clearing up after Easter I got a call from the hospital, a cancellation meant I could have my eye surgery yesterday, not too long to think about things, I was first on the list and out by lunchtime.


Here I am propped up in bed with my laptop writing a gentle blog and sipping a cup of tea, 

Recently I have tried my hand at a few open competitions. New to me but open to all. It gives me new challenges and a chance to see if my work is judged to be 'good enough'. I have spoken about these before , and I am none the wiser now than I was then as to why or what is chosen.

Here's the obligatory cheesy photo of me grinning next to my painting.

If you are going to try your hand be prepared for rejection as well as success, and rejection can be a blow.

However when the answer is 'yes' it is a joy. As I work alone , and don't have an art school education I think I enter to see if my work can cut it.... but I know deep down that the joy of watercolour is my real motivation, competitions give my year highlights, and a chance to see other works by artists at work today.

So enough of my waffle, I currently have a piece in the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour competition, do go visit the Mall Galleries up until April 13th, the exhibition is amazing. However I have just heard that 'Crow Black' has made it into the Society of Women Artists exhibition in June, this show celebrates women artists and is not for watercolour but for all mediums, so I was thrilled.

Here are a few photos showing the process of my painting .

First I tried to find an interesting pose.( the crow not me!)


Then as always I set to work on the details first. The eye with the light in it, The beak with it's many colours.

Then the legs and the shadow. 

I am not giving you a 'how to' here, as I can't remember a lot, just an essence of how my crow came to life.

So as I move away from detail, I get quicker and more intuitive, throwing in colour , all wet in wet. I want the bird or animal I paint to be 'alive'.

I move along the body not allowing the paint to dry, but still in control, just. adding purples to the blues and trying to describe the feathers, seeing where the light hits the body.

As I finish the painting I want it to look dynamic, and spontaneous, a joy to paint and even more of a joy when he gets chosen for a London exhibition.

p.s. thank you all for your kind comments while I rest and recover x




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1 comment

No more squinting for you then🤣 – hope you recover quickly.
Good luck with your beautiful crow, his energy is wonderful👏🏻.

Julie Stevens

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