Monday, April 9, 2012

The Black Russian Strikes Again ...

I started by laying in some graded washes - aureolin, quin. pink and cobalt blue. 

More cobalt blue.

It was looking rather sparse, so I put in an impressionistic sort of drape of poplar leaves behind the goose. I'm not 100% thrilled with it, but it will do. 

The lighting in the reference photo was not quite what I needed, so I used my sketch to rough in a plan for the shadows.

And here, I've started with shadowing, using quin. pink and cobalt blue.

It's not quite a Black Russian - more of a Dark Slav. That's my feeling about my painting right now.  And yes, pure imported borscht runs through my veins. All my grandparents came from the Ukraine just after the First World War. I attribute all my quirks to that fact!
Bruno is my Cossack steed. { He doesn't know it yet.  :) }
I love the old Red Army Chorus. A Welsh men's chorus is a very close second. I still have an old 78 RPM vinyl of the opera "Alexander Nevsky" buried in my closet, along with many other vinyl records.
Anyway, there it is - a bit more of who I am. The art will straighten out. I'm just going through what all of us artists go through from time to time.

And as ever and always, please be welcome to leave a note.


  1. It is looking so nice already Kathryn! I love your gradated and colorful background washes. And your sketch is so awesome too. :)) Can't wait to see the next step.

  2. Can't wait to see this guy come to life:) Loved earning a little more about you also!

  3. There sounds a touch of, 'Hubble, Bubble Toil and Trouble' about this post, Kathryn. I'm sure there is more to this watercolour business than simply painting. Take a touch of cobalt blue, two frogs, a pinch of quin stirred with a cold bat wing....

    As for the Red Army Choir ... as a Welshman I can only say, Cymru Am Byth (Wales for Ever).

  4. You can't run from your roots... :-)) Thanks for sharing Kathryn, always nice to learn more about a blogger friend. Your goose is looking fine so far, keep up the good work! XOXO

  5. We love that you always share all the steps you go through to create your paintings. You make it look so easy, but its not.
    None of it is easy. We love all the colors you use, and they just seem to magically go to their proper places!
    I love your goose- I love all your paintings. And like the others said- its nice to learn more about you.

  6. The attitude of your goose is well captured and I look forward to see the end of the story.

  7. The goose is coming along well. Hope to see it completed soon. Nice to hear about your background and your nostalgia for your roots. Have you been to Ukraine?
    I love listening to old records too, though most that I have are 45 RPMs :)

  8. It's looking great so far! And it's always nice to learn more about our bloggy friends :0)