My first attempts at painting with watercolors were in England a few years ago. I was visiting family in Whitchurch, England. I had seen this church on a previous visit and knew I wanted to paint it on this trip. After struggling with my early attempt at watercolors I decided to go back to a familiar medium...pen and ink. I used Bristol board. Its a good paper for ink. I purposely left the gate open. I stepped back and sat cross -legged on the ground and began to draw.
I drew a detailed drawing of the scene in pencil with the intention of going over it in ink with a crow quill pen. A tool I was comfortable with.
Next to the church was a little cottage where an elderly lady named Miss Audrey lived. She walked over to where I was sitting and asked with a sweet English accent. "Would you like a cushion?" "Sure", I responded. She brought out a cushion for me and I worked on the picture for a while. She came back out later. "Would you like a cup of tea? She went and got me a cup of tea....repeatedly. That dear woman took good care of me. I returned to finish the piece on a later visit. I was confident with my watercolor abilities by then. I decided to paint it instead of using ink. Because It was drawn on Bristol board instead of watercolor paper I had to paint thick and use as little water as possible. Not a typical watercolor. When I got back to the States I mailed Miss Audrey a print of the church. Heard she was moved by the gesture. One was also donated to the church and it hangs in there to this day.
January 16th, 2012
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