Thursday, 21 February 2013

Hummingbird :: the return of the Watercolor Rebel

                         Hummingbird ~ Watercolor on paper 16"x12"
*click on image to see it larger*

I'm still in the throes of a full-flight love affair with my watercolor paints... And it has also started to dawn on me that I might just be a little bit of a Watercolor Renegade!  A rebel.   
This painting above is the proof.

Let me explain...When it comes to all the rules surrounding what is deemed the standard practice with watercolor, I happily find my way of painting is very non-traditional and non-conformist!

This was brought into sharp focus in the library yesterday while looking through some books on the subject. To a lot of people, clearly watercolor painting is seen (and used) in a rather conservative way, resulting in delicate washed-out landscapes, often a little flat, maybe even.... stuffy? dull? Can be so bold as to suggest such a thing?   
Anyway, that's what I've seen so far... there are of course exceptions to every rule...and I intend to be one of them! 

Viva de l'aquarelle Revolucion!

Catherine Athena xo

• • •My journey through the senses• • •
taste:: A hearty vegetable soup ; pumpkin, parsnip, pearl barley, potatoes, carrots, cubed green beans, onion, garlic, coriander, marjoram & stock. Perfect on a chilly Spring day
smell:: The rich damp fragrance of Earth as the Hedgerows begin to explode into new foliage.
touch:: Seedpods and Leaves; inspiration everywhere when I walk in nature!
see:: "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button"; Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett - I love this film, it seems to be able to tap me right into the premise of living in the present moment, and the bitter sweetness that nothing ever lasts forever.
hear:: Destiny's Child ~ 'Survivor' - a wonderful punchy soundtrack in the background of my life, as I get my paint on, reminding me to keep my eye on the goal ahead.
think:: I'm really looking forward to my one day off a week tomorrow (from my day job)
feel:: So delighted with my new painting (Hummingbird) above - pleasantly unexpected results (that exceed expectations) from moments of wild abandon and play!
read:: "The Ladies of Grace Adieu" ~ Susanna Clarke; dark fairy tales described as 'Angela Carter meets Jane Austen' - the story 'Mr Simonelli or the Fairy Widower' (my favourite in the book) was plugging right back into the magic the author created with 'Jonathan Strange & Mr Norell'.
intuit:: A hopi dance rattle could transport me into whole new worlds! 

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Sunrise over the Cauldron of Inspiration

Happy Valentine's Day to you, wherever this may find you...

Sharing a wet-on-wet Watercolor painting I've been working on over the past couple of days. with a little bit of a Celtic flavour to remind me of the bracing ice winds of Springtime as I walk in the English countryside at this time of year. The deep crimson light of daybreak is incredibly evocative through the morning chill.

Sunrise over the Cauldron of Inspiration ~ Watercolor on paper 16"x12"
*click on image to see it larger*

My daily walks out in nature continue to inspire and enliven my senses. Witnessing, observing closely and enjoying the daily signs of growth and change as the plants and trees begin to rouse from their winter slumber. Tiny buds and shoots appearing on branches, still stark against the skyline.

Wishing you all an inspired and blessed February!
Catherine Athena xo

Sunday, 10 February 2013


A new painting just finished today. It's a coffee stain watercolor it smells rather lovely on the paper. 

The marbled pattern reminds me quite a lot of the single-sided shamanic frame drums I've seen that are stained with black walnut and have the same marbled ink effect on the drum skins.  

Today marks the Chinese New Year of the Snake, in its water element and the new moon in Aquarius. It feels like a good day to celebrate and launch my art FaceBook page. Please stop by and visit! You can find me here ::

Wishing you a bright and prosperous Chinese New Year!

Blessings of beauty! Catherine Athena xo