New Institute for Higher Learning in the Arts Opening Soon

It’s almost official. A logo has been designed and the board has approved it. We have elected our klass president. I am polishing my pencils, and waxing my watercolors for the first day of school. It will be here before you know it. We decided to call our art institute BARK University or BARK U. based on the response from the 3 blog readers who gave me feedback when I asked for an opinion on a name for my new school.

Since I made myself Dean of WaterCOLOR, I got to choose my 2 favorite complementary colors for our school colors, Permanent Rose and Leaf Green. We don’t have any problems finding a mascot either, Pace volunteered. Our campus will have several locations. The main campus will be in my home studio in San Marcos, other campus’ may include a local farm, a bullet train in Kyoto, a barge in Central Germany, the beach in Encinitas and of course there will be a location in Italy. I may have to take a field trip to Italy soon to find the perfect location.

I hope you like our  logo

I hope you like our logo

Free Spring Watercolor Lesson

Here is a Spring themed step by step watercolor lesson for you. 

1. Here’s the photo, I am using as reference. I took this photo in the South of France. It’s a display set up on the steps of a flower shop. 



2. I drew a quick sketch where I rearranged the objects in the photo, moved around items and left out some of the items I thought were distracting. 


I added shading with light medium and dark lines to give the drawing dimension. 

I added shading with light medium and dark lines to give the drawing dimension. 

3. I started by painting the background area first, then painted the pots and watering can by dropping paint into areas already wet with clean water.

Tune in Tomorrow or Friday to Finish Your Painting? 



Italian Vacation in Your Plans?

I’ve been all over the map lately planning the itinerary for the Fall Anywhere Art Tour to Italy. It will be our 31st tour! 


We will be visiting a variety of locations around North Western, Central and Southern Tuscany with a touch of the Lazio province thrown in because we must visit the UNESCO World heritage site of Tarquinia and learn more about the Etruscans, their customs, and their fabulous murals. We’ll also taste wine in the Chianti region, visit the Festival of the Thrush (which promises dancing in the streets), dip our toes in a thermal spa, ride bikes or stroll in the wall park in Lucca, visit a shoe factory, see the Cinque Terre and spend a Sunday at an Antiques Faire in the heart of Lucca.



In fact, I am so excited about the Fall Italian adventure that I got the vapors and our rescue Aussie had to revive me.



Pep Talking Yourself into Painting

This weekend I tried a new technique to get myself to my desk to watercolor.  You may have used this technique before with a friend or family member. Maybe you’ve said to them  “You can do it! You’re smart, you have a good head on your shoulders, just try,”

Pep talks are not to be cnfused with affirmations. I think an affirmation is something you repeat to yourself that you want to be or happen. You could say, “I am a successful painter, I am creating all the time, even if these things aren’t true I think the theory is that if you repeat them often enough you will believe them. Affirmations don’t work for me. I tried saying to myself, “I am 20 lbs thinner,” then I reached for a cookie.

Today I said to myself something I had been mulling over for a while. “Barbara, you need to practice the painting concepts you have been studying, you don’t need to create a perfect painting.” I also threw in, when you finish you can have a cookie, ooops I said carrot”. 


Here is my practice. Going into the kitchen to get my carrot now.  

Here is my practice. Going into the kitchen to get my carrot now.