Beautiful Ending

There is a point when I am midway through a painting that I have to hold my breath and hope I don’t wreck it. That’s especially true when I’ve invested in a careful drawing as a base for the watercolor. So I’m especially pleased to come out the other side of this piece with a beautiful ending. (See last week’s post for the beginning.)Nest_catbird

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36 thoughts on “Beautiful Ending

  1. Oh, it is so lovely!!! I know what you mean, it doesn’t take much to feel that sense of “Oh, oh..”. I get freaked sometimes and print my sketch on watercolour paper first… to make sure I’m not going to mess it up! This is very beautiful.

    • Thanks Valerie! Yes…I suppose there is patience, though it doesn’t feel that way. I think I just figure it will take me a little while to do and, in the end, the result will be worth the time.

    • I agree– the green was important for making this work. Though catbirds don’t really weave greenery into their nests, they are typically well concealed in greenery. So I added the touch of green for a little lively color.

  2. I was holding my breath for you! Your drawing was so beautiful that I thought it was perfect as is. But this is every bit as gorgeous. I love the depth and the green really makes the nest come to life.

    • Thanks Susan! I enjoyed both the drawing and the painting. I could see midway through the painting that I needed to add some greenery– it does make it come to life. Otherwise, it would have been better to leave the nest empty and brown.

  3. It’s so beautiful, Jean! I haven’t gotten up my nerve to paint a nest yet, but you’ve inspired me to give it a try this spring. Do you always do such a detailed pencil sketch first? Do you find that it’s necessary to give you a roadmap of values and keep everything straight?

    • Hi Leslie- I think you will find that nests are very forgiving…and very fun. If I am painting in watercolor, I sometimes do a detailed sketch in pen (not pencil) first. Detailed pencil would get too murky, I think. But you don’t have to do that much detail first. You can start with a light pencil drawing and then do the entire thing with watercolor. I start with a loose graded wash and then proceed to pick out strands using lots of negative painting. Look in the Paintings section at the nest of the goldfinch. That was done using this technique. Good luck!

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