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Painting Camellias with Mariah

Camelia #3, Watercolor on paper, 4x6"
Camellia #3, Watercolor on paper, 4x6"

Last night my step-granddaughter Mariah, a brilliant, almost 10 year-old artist with an enviable  sense of design and assurance and confidence in her work came over for a visit while her parents went out to dinner. Even though she she was sick, she was still up for doing some drawing and painting.

We picked a few camellias from my tree and got to work (or was it play?) drawing. She wanted to use acrylics; I fooled around with gouache and watercolor. Here’s her painting:

Mariah's Camelias, acrylic on paper, 8x8"
Mariah's Camellias, Acrylic & graphite on paper, 8x8"

And here are the two I did last night. (The one at the top top of this post I did this morning, with the flowers beside the window. I wasn’t ready to stop painting these pretty flowers, the first of the flowers to bloom in my garden.)

Camelia #2, watercolor on paper, 6x4"
Camellia #2, Watercolor & ink on paper, 6x4"
Camelia #1, Gouache on paper, 6x4"
Camellia #1, Gouache and graphite on paper, 4x6"

I really don’t like the way using white with gouache looks so chaulky.  I much prefer the clear lights in watercolor that you get by leaving areas white or only lightly glazed with color.

2 replies on “Painting Camellias with Mariah”

I love how things are blooming around here! And that pink is marvelous. A couple of days ago I saw a woman sketching on BART, on the Richmond line, and I was CERTAIN it was you, so I actually went over and asked her if she blogged. She gave me that “you are insane and please get out of my personal space” look before telling me I was insane and please go away, so I knew she wasn’t you. But I love thinking that you’re out there putting all the beauty in the east bay (and more) down on paper.


Your watercolors are so beautiful, Jana. I can see why you are disappointed with the gouache as compared to the watercolor.

Wow! Mariah’s painting would make a great poster. I want a print!


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