Just Paint.

My Home It's taken me awhile to get back on the art horse.  Not going to lie.  I have been trying to find my groove again and even though I haven't been painting painting, I've been reading.  To date here are my absolute favorites.  And I mean getting dangerous with the library late fees territory:

Water Paper Paint: Exploring Creativity with Watercolor and Mixed Media  - Heather Smith Jones

Watercolor Painting, A Comprehensive Approach to Mastering the Medium - Tom Hoffmann

And of course I can't forget YouTube:

I have been messing with my process too.  Order of operations is big for me so first I would just dive into the watercolor paper with my sloppy paints.  I didn't get anywhere because I didn't know where I was going.  I am extremely methodical with my digital art but watercolor is a completely different beast to me.  So, I would read and watch other painters I admired and try what they did.  Some sketch, then bring the sketch into photoshop and compose the image, then print out the image, then use a light-box to trace it onto the watercolor paper and then go for it with the paint.

When I follow those steps, by the time I get to the painting phase, I'm paralyzed.  Watercolor paint is so expensive, watercolor paper is not cheap either, then you add in the brushes.....everything I paint better be a masterpiece at this point.  That is what I hear in my brain, that very loud annoying voice.  What I am finding that works for me (knock on wood that doesn't jinx it) is that I sketch out elements I might want to paint on computer paper.  Just scribble and freely draw.  Then when I think I have my elements, I will sketch out a composition.  Then I come to my paper and freely draw my composition but not too much.  Everything doesn't have to be planned in advance, a nice mix is nice.  Lastly, it's time to paint.  Parts can be wet into wet, other parts wet onto dry, etc.  But I eat that elephant one bite at a time.  Oh and chanting that no one is going to see this helps too.  I tell myself I'm painting for me (which I am, it brings me joy) and if it doesn't turn into anything it isn't a big deal.  I think this mind play is working for me.

I am taking in all of these opinions and methods of how other painters work and finding what works for me so I can just paint.  That is by far my favorite part.

The painting above is called My Home and 6x8 prints are available in my shop!