Category Archives: Abstract Watercolors

Old Railroad Car – Three Artistic Interpretations

In continuing with the theme from last week, this week I’m featuring an old train car. And not to be too redundant, but as I stated last week: “Anytime I create an art print, I have typically worked the subject matter into different forms and presentations. When I hit a look I like, I spend more time working it into a “final product”. Sometimes I end up with more than one version. If I feel strongly about the final presentation in each version, I will keep them. Having said that, I do try and limit it to no more than three of anyone subject matter.” Today’s blog features an old train car located on a hiking path along the river in Rockford, Michigan. At the time I took the photograph in December of 2015, it was abandoned, but looked like it had been used as a diner.

As I did last week, the first version I’m showing was created using a black and white sketching technique.

The Old Train Car

The second version just like last week adds colored to the sketching technique.

The Red Railroad Car

Then the third version was created using an abstract watercolor approach.

Old Train

Thoughts?

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Abstract Lines And Curves

This week I wanted to share three art prints I created from the same drawing. They are art prints I created using digital drawing. I drew curves at random and kept drawing more so that the various shapes intersected. As I couldn’t decide what color hue I wanted for this drawing, I created three of them in different hues. I finished by drawing a slightly larger outline of the shapes in black.

For the first one, I used Purple and Blue for the colors.

Abstract Lines And Curves In Purple And Blue

For the second one I went to a variety of blue hues.

Abstract Lines And Curves In Blue

For the third one I switched it up and went with red hues.

Abstract Lines And Curves In Red

I played with other hues, but settled on these three for the final prints.

Thoughts?

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Reach Out

Reach Out

Using an abstract watercolor I created of a saguaro cactus in the Arizona Desert as a background, I felt like this motivational thought was the perfect fit. I believe He has chosen a path for each of us to walk. Often times in life, we find ourselves off that path and somewhat lost in where to go or what direction to take. Our guide is always there just waiting for us to take His hand and He will guide us not only back to the path, but keep us on the path.

I usually think of a forest path to best typify this thought process, but living a few years in the desert and being a fan of hiking….just as true there as anywhere else…it’s important to stay on the path….snakes, scorpions, etc.

Thoughts?

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Blue Sunset, Blue Moon Set

Following last weeks post of bright red and orange abstract sunsets, this week I’m posting two new art prints that are also created in an abstract manner. One of them is a sunset and the other is a full moon setting. Both art prints are from coastal viewpoints along the Pacific Ocean. The difference from last weeks post is the color hues are totally different. As with last weeks post, these abstract prints were created from actual visual inspirations. In the case of these two, they were inspired from the coastline in Northern California with a thick layer of fog rolling in. In both cases the fog kind of separated slightly to allow the light from both to shine through momentarily, but forever staying in my head.

Blue Abstract Sunset
Abstract Coastal Moon Setting

Thoughts?

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Abstract Red and Orange Coastal Sunsets

The attached three prints are abstract interpretations of some colorful sunsets. The setting for all three is Coastal Carlsbad in San Diego County. The inspiration behind all three was some pretty spectacular sunsets over the Pacific Ocean. I have shared in the past a couple of prints that I created from that type of sunset, but with these I took the liberty of creating a look in a very abstract manner.

Orange Ocean Sunset
Orange Hillside Sunset
Abstract Coastal Sunset

Thoughts?

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Love Conquers All….

Love conquers all is a saying I am guilty of using quite a bit. It says so much and has come out of my mouth in many tough interpersonal situations. If you would ask my girls what is Dad infamous for always saying, they would come back with “Take the high road…..love conquers all.” I firmly believe if you have love at the core of what you are doing or saying, it does ultimately conquer all obstacles. It came full circle to me with one of my daughters recently when we were having a discussion about a situation I was dealing with and out of her mouth came: “Take the high road, love conquers all! You used that expression over and over again with us girls in these types of situations and that would be my recommendation to you in this case”.

I took her advice in that particular situation and it got me to thinking about creating some art prints capturing the essence of that expression. I ended up using three of my art prints with that saying as an overlay.

The first one is a color photograph of a peaceful and serene pond in Butchart Gardens located just outside of Victoria, British Columbia.

“Love Conquers All Butchart Gardens Pond”

In the second one I used a soft watercolor of Hidden Lake located just outside of Whistler, British Columbia, again going for the peaceful and serene look.

“Love Conquers All Mountain Meadow Lake”

With the third one I wanted to use something that included people, especially multiple people or a crowd of people. Keeping with a “soft look”, I chose a watercolor I created of a crowd of people inspired by a scene I saw in Seattle, Washington ahead of a major sports event.

Love Conquers All Seattle Abstract

Thoughts?

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Subtle Abstract Shapes

This week I am posting two prints where I used the same style in creating them, but on very different subject matters. Sometimes I like to take a subject and pull it back to its basic shapes. I like this technique in keeping some consistent coloring, but still forming the shape.

The first print is a camellia bloom where I used a solid background with subtle colors forming petals and a dark color to create a leaf and stem.

Pink Camellia In Abstract

The second one is a beach scene with two people walking alone. I decided it was a father and son walking together enjoying the tranquility of an empty beach and the visual of sailboats just off the coast. I kept the colors to just a few and the shapes simple. The sky was created using two colors to suggest a low marine layer (fog) coming in just after sunset with the break in the fog showing the lighter colored sky. The father and son are suggested shapes, but do show shadows to support the lighting in the sky.

Father And Son Walk The Beach

Thoughts?

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Hot Air Balloons – The Inspiration of the Envelope

Most of us appreciate the beauty of a hot air balloon sailing gracefully through the air, rising and descending. What draws our attention is the balloon itself which is called the envelope. Today the colors are typically vibrant with bright shapes and colors. This week I’m featuring three hot air balloon art prints I created using a soft, somewhat abstract watercolor approach.

This first print focuses on the envelope being heated up, which I thought was a unique look to feature with the bright flame shooting upward. I used strong bold lines to create the overall shape and then filled in the areas with bright colors using a soft air brush look.

Evening Glow Red and Yellow Watercolor

This next one is still on the ground, but getting ready to rise. Same technique with the bold lines, but I wanted the contrast between the colorful envelope and the sky (ground at the bottom of the print) to be highlighted.

Peach Hot Air Balloon Night Glow Watercolor

This last one highlights the many colors of this particular balloon and keeps that the focal point.

The Yellow and Blue Balloon

Thoughts?

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Abstract Family

Over the last couple of weeks, I have been sharing what happens when you present the same subject matter in two different artistic methods and how that can change the way an image impacts the viewer. This week I am going to dive a little deeper into that using a variety of abstract art methods. I used one of these examples in a post that I did in 2014, but this time around wanted to show how four different results came from one group of small statues.

OK, now that I have confused the issue, let me start with the process I went through using the original subject matter. That subject matter is two small statues that go together and represents a family; a mother holding a  child and a father with a child on his shoulders. Having been married for 47 years and raising three incredible daughters, my wife and I celebrate family.  

I started the process by taking those two statuettes and placing them in a light box snapping numerous pictures of the statues in slightly different positions settling ultimately on the three I have attached to this post. I was only using the photographs as a basis, so wasn’t concerned whether the shot was in perfect focus or not (which one isn’t). From that point I tried a variety of styles and methods creating numerous art prints and finally settling on the attached four.

Starting with the the first capture of the mother and child in the foreground and the father with child on his shoulders in the background:

With the resulting art prints being:

For the first print, I used an impasto technique (impasto done in acrylic or oil emphasizes strong and bold brush strokes).

The Family Unit in Soft Hues

On the second one I played with the colors using a fauvism style (fauvism: vivd expressionistic and non-naturalistic use of color).

The Family Unit in Gold

Next up is the picture I used for the third art print. In this case I positioned the mother and father figure more side by side.

From this inspiration I created this:

Again, using a fauvism approach I created this art print with a complete change in colors.

The Family in Green

My last example comes from the next picture.

This basis was just slightly different in positioning of the statues resulting in the following:

For this fourth art print I used an abstract watercolor technique and again bold color choices.

The Family in Purple

I had fun with this series and just wanted to share one of the ways I come up with my art prints.

Thoughts?

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