Why I Chose Watercolor
With Oils Dominating the Scene, I Was Compelled to Paint With Watercolor Because I Fell In Love With It
As a first blog, I believe sharing why I chose watercolor will provide insight into every painting I share.
After studying and preparing for the most difficult, professional exam of my life, my “left brain” literally felt like it was going to explode. And perhaps out of that necessity, I did something I never did before — went onto Google and searched for art images. One image captivated me. It was a marble fountain with flowing water, and I’d never seen artwork that “spoke” to, and touched, me this way. I looked up who the artist was, and it was John Singer Sargent — and it was a watercolor. That did it! From that moment, I was compelled to teach myself art, and specifically watercolor.
John Singer Sargent
My Life’s Direction Was Clear.
I remember in kindergarten some of my classmates sharing what they wanted to be when they grew up. Others said they didn’t know, but then listed three options. I never knew what I wanted to “be”; I was “me” and all of those careers listed (ex: police person, fire fighter, actor/actress, business person, lawyer, doctor, etc.) by my classmates never connected or rang true with me. From starting in kindergarten and culminating in college when I had to choose a “major”, this dilemma never cleared up for me.
Then that moment when I saw Sargent’s fountain painting happened, and I knew I had to learn and try to master watercolor as best as I can. That was the first time something really rang true to me in terms of “what I wanted to be”, mainly because it was “me”.
The way I look and see beauty in the world, the way time stands still in those magic moments like in a late Summer’s golden hour sunset, or a soft, misty calming morning, all of these things are “me” and now I know how I can share that — via art. If it was not for me happening to randomly see that one painting of Sargent’s fountain, I can most certainly say I would never have become an artist. With my Aunt being a professional artist, and my Mother being a docent at the Getty Museum, and formerly at the Huntington Library and LACMA, if art would have interested me, it would have happened. All I know is, I saw Sargent’s painting at the exact right moment, and it was a watershed event that changed the course of my life.
I studied Sargent’s work extensively, along with other master artists, learning art history, how to create art (ie the fundamentals of drawing, color theory, etc.), and watercolor. These are topics for a later conversation, but none of it would have happened but for John Singer Sargent.
Is there an artist who so inspired you, that you decided to either take up art, or to dedicate yourself and make art your living? I’d love to know! Send me a message with your story!
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