Saturday, December 29, 2012

Evening in the Desert - Graduated Wash

watercolour - 'Evening in the Desert'
Creating a Graduated Wash:
This small watercolour was created on a demo piece showing a graduated wash. The paper was orientated 180 degrees from what is shown here, and tilted about at about a 30 degree angle. Although numbers make the process sound technical, it is easy to do.
Mix up enough paint in one colour to be able to cover your entire paper. Starting at the top, using a wide brush, in one even stroke lay a strip of colour. Quickly add a bit of water to the paint mix and repeat the painting process slightly overlapping the second brush stroke with the bottom of the first brush stroke. With each successive brush stroke make the paint mix increasingly more watery and less paint.
When the paper is completely covered lay the paper flat to dry.  With a tissue, wipe up any excess paint at the edges of the paper. The key to retaining the luminosity is to avoid over brushing. If you have to add more paint as you go across the page, do so but avoid multiple brush strokes going over the same area.
After the paper is thoroughly dried you can add a silhouetted image on top using a darker colour. Here I used the same hue, only darker, making this an analogous colour scheme. In this class, Margie painted this same image but chose to paint a burnt sienna colour over an light blue-green background using a near complementary colour scheme. It was a good choice too.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Prickly Pear watercolour

Watercolour: 'Prickly Pear'

The fruit of the prickly pear fruit demands attention as the colour is close to complementary on the colour wheel. These cactus fruit are also known as cactus figs and are used for food. I have heard of a jelly being made from them. You must remove the fine spines on it by peeling or burning them off. In Mexico it's fruit had historically been made into alcoholic beverages.
One thing I didn't know is that the prized natural, cochineal (red) dye is made from an insect that lives on this type of cactus. I would love to see the range of red shades it produces.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Wet-in-wet Watercolour Technique

Sonora Desert Burro - Watercolour
I am fascinated with animals in the wild and the burros especially so, as you can see them occasionally roaming around the desert. Burros were introduced to North America centuries ago about the time of Christopher Columbus and used later often by prospectors. From there feral populations developed. Isn't it amazing that the burro can survive in the dry conditions of the Sonora desert?
The burro, itself,  was painted by wetting the paper and painting him in one go from wet to dry. A fun technique if a bit unpredictable. His dark hair has a violet glaze on top to relate to the rest of the painting.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Three Layers of Dye

Dye Painted Cotton
This dye painting process involved a slightly new technique and I am pleased with the results. The piece was started on damp soda soaked cotton. Soda ash is the activator for the dye allowing it to adhere to the fabric.
Using fibre reactive dyes that were mixed into dye concentrates, I painted the orange and green stems and leaves. Next  I sketched in the white stems and leaves with a light pencil and painted the background around them in a medium blue. The piece was placed in plastic and cured in a warm place overnight.
The dark blue foliage was then painted and again cured. For the final step, the next day I hung the piece to dry before starting as I didn't wanted the fine black line to bleed. I mixed a few grains of soda ash in the bottle of thickened black dye and placed on a nib for drawing. I did this as I didn't know if there would be enough soda ash left in the cloth to activated the final layer of black dye. The cotton was cured for the third time and then was washed in a Dharma Textile detergent and ironed dry.
Painting with liquid dye takes some practice as it spreads a certain amount when placed on the cloth. Also there can be some separation of mixed colours called haloing. Note the turquoise bled into the white. I must say I rather like the results.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Softer Colours

Hand (dye) Painted Cotton 'Floating Flowers'
The beautiful luminosity of dyes is really demonstrated in this piece. I am still using colours within a triad but these are softer colours than I usually paint with. Just as with watercolour painting, forcing yourself to try different colours is important in keeping your work lively. The colours were mixed from Dharma Trading Procion fibre reactive dyes: fuchsia, lemon yellow and turquoise. The yellow and turquoise were both warmed with a little of the fuchsia. All were lightened by adding urea water.
The only thickened dye I used was in sketching in details with a fuchsia dye that was put in a bottle with a nib. This method allows for an expressive line to be drawn. I find that more artful than using a permanent fabric marker which gives an even line.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Painting with Liquid Dye Concentrates in Two Steps

Hand (dye) Painted Cotton

Unlike most of my posts, the following description is somewhat technical and suited to someone who has some experience in dyeing fabric.

My first 6 pieces are washed after a few weeks of being away from the dye studio. This time instead of using the thickened fibre reactive dyes, I painted these soda-soaked cotton pieces with liquid dyes that I premixed into concentrates. I lightened or mixed the concentrates as required. After painting, the pieces were batched to cure.
Normally when using thickened dyes I would next rinse the pieces. Rather this time as there was no alginate (dye thickener) to act as a resist, I repainted details on top using thickened dyes with some soda ash (activator) added to the dye. Some of the details were added using thickened dyes in a bottle with a nib and additional darks were added in thickened dyes by painting with a brush. Again the pieces were placed in plastic (batching) to cure. Here are two of the rinsed results.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Carving a heron stamp

Carving a Heron Stamp for Textile Design
Stamping fabric is a great way to use thickened dyes to create your own fabric. Carving your own stamps rather than using purchased stamps keeps your fabric original. One of the greatest stamps I ever saw, my friend Gail made from the end of a wine cork which had been slightly torn from the wine opener.
Here I am carving a heron stamp into a lino block. First, an image is sketched onto the block and then it is carved with wood carving tools. Those tools are sharp and having lessons from my friend Joyce, an amazing carver, has helped me to know what tools to use, how to carve and how to be safety conscious.
This lino block was purchased at an art store which may also carry a rubber like product that comes in sheets for carving. For very basic stamps, the rubber is a good choice of material for carving. More detail can be carved into a lino block though and I like the sturdiness of the material. It may take me a little while to complete this heron stamp but when I do, I will post how it works with the thickened dyes.
Buttons with texture, glued to the end of a thread spool work as stamps. Plastic doilies glued to blocks of wood work. Look around for your own things to make into stamps and let me know if you find something particularly good. Happy fabric stamping!

Saturday, November 24, 2012


'Waves' Hand painted fat quarter
With a fresh batch of fibre reactive dyes and 10 yards of fabric to dye, I got started in the dye studio after a few weeks off. I started painting 8 fat quarts with various fabric designs. The hand painting was done with thickened dye, some with liquid dye concentrates, and some with both. Several will require a second layer after this first one cures.
Fabric with a water motif is difficult to come by so I thought I would try a wavy sea. It almost makes one motion-sick to look at it so I guess I got the wavy part right.

Friday, November 16, 2012

'Scarlet Study'

'Scarlet Study'
Have I said before I like painting on location? Well let me tell you again, I LOVE painting on location. I believe it helps me to capture the emotions associated with what I am painting. Of course that is very personal to me but hopefully the viewer can also feel something of what I am trying to say. Red blossoms command attention, don't they?
If you are interested in the technical aspect of this painting, a large challenge was to avoid equal amounts of the red and green complements which could be too garish. The pods originally were burnt orange - too close to red. Changing them to green allowed the red blooms to be the painting's sparkle.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Rusty Buildings for Painting

Rusty Metal Storage Units
A person could search long and hard for such an artful arrangement of old buildings. The first Storage Units? I finally took the time to photograph them for a watercolour study of painting rusty metal. I think the green painted shed adds contrast to the others. The challenge might be to keep it from being the focal point.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Newspaper Article re Art Career

Creston Valley Advance Article
This week's Creston Valley Advance newspaper 'Meet you Maker' article is about Eileen Gidman's art career. Her watercolour 'Clothesline Series' was featured with 5 photos.
Like Eileen Gidman's Artist Facebook page at!/pages/Eileen-Gidman-Watercolour-and-Textile-Artist/310557619037972

Monday, October 29, 2012

Mountain Goats Heading to the Snow in Aug

Alexandra's Mountain Goat Photo

Eileen's Sketch on Location

As the weather cools my thoughts are on the many lovely hikes I had this summer. A special day started with sketching the goats that had wandered into the camp. My friend Alexandra caught this fabulous photo of the nannies and kids heading up to a snow patch to lay comfortably away from the heat, I guess. The silhouette of the white animals against the blue sky really gets me!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Workshop - Participant Pieces

Sylvia's Dye Painted Textile
A wonderful way to be creative, is to share a 'Painting with Dyes' workshop with others. Members from the Creston Art Club, the Riondel Art Club and the Creston Fibre Artisians met in Oct for two days of learning the techniques of direct dye painting, presented by Eileen Gidman.
Check out the workshop page for additional photos.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

BC Ministry of Energy, Painting by Eileen Gidman

'Everyday Clothesline'
Watercolour painting by Eileen Gidman

Eileen Gidman's 'Everyday Clothesline' was presented by Fortis, BC to Cory Waters, the Manager of the Energy Efficiency Branch, of the BC Ministry for Energy, Mines and Natural Gas for an ongoing partnership in energy conservation programs. Click here for photo of presentation This presentation took place at Okanagan PowerSense Forum & Awards 2012 and will also be represented in Castlegar on Oct 24, 2012.
 'Everyday Clothesline'
Energy conservation is dear to artist Eileen Gidman. Through a series of paintings featuring clotheslines, she highlights the concept of energy conservation.
The painting 'Everyday Clothesline' tells a story that evokes nostalgia for another time. The older style shingled home emphasizes the mood, and the clothesline reel and electric meter are prominently featured to signify the need for protection of our resources.
It is, however, the workman's hanging clothes that first caused Eileen to photograph the scene. She feels this scene speaks of everyones' ability, even after a hard day of work, to hang their clothes to dry.
Not only are clotheslines economic and green, they're just so artful!

Contact for a print or cards.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Paint Out: Painting Started

Paint Out: Painting Started
Painting on location on a rainy fall day with a dozen or more other artists, life doesn't get much better than that. Well maybe it didn't need to be quite so chilly. 
This watercolour needs some final touchs in the studio, but one artist had a great suggestion of just turning our paintings to the wall for a few days. Then when you go back you are looking with fresh eyes. I know for sure something will have to be done with the four evenly sized and evenly spaced trees on the left. Sentinels protecting the rest of the painting isn't quite the look I was going for.
As this seems to be the format I seem keen to use this year, several related watercolour sketches on one panel, I have decided to call this format a series and I am now looking for a name. If you have any ideas, send them my way. 

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Sunflower Textile Art

Hand (dye) Painted Textile with Free motion Sketch Stitching
4 1/2 X 6 1/2"
Placed on a card with envelope $9.95
plus $2. shipping and handling in Canada and USA
 So sad the sunflowers are over for the season. This may be one of the last art pieces of sunflowers until next summer.
This piece was dyed twice as after washing the first time, the piece seemed too light. Although redyeing can seem a pain, it really creates greater depth in pieces. Also, note the use of an analogous colour scheme. The yellow, green and blue with the blue being more a green-blue creates harmony within the piece.
If you are looking for an inspiring book on colour, Nita Leland's book 'Confident Color' ( does not dissappoint!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Moose at Sunset

Dye Painted Textile: 'Moose at Sunset'
6 1/2 X 41/2" card size
Card and envelope $9.95
 plus $2. shipping Canada and USA

Lori at the Creston Fibre Artisians meeting suggested this was a moose in a sunset. Love that thought. Thanks Lori. Occasionally we see a moose in my rural neighbourhood. This Textile Art piece was inspired by just such a sighting this summer.
The piece is hand (dye) painted on 100% cotton material and free-motion sketch stitched with black polyester thread. 

Friday, October 5, 2012

Fortis BC watercolour painting

Power Sense Manager, Carol Suhan at Fortis BC (right) receives watercolour painting 'Everyday Clothesline' from artist, Eileen Gidman (left). Check back later next week to find out who this painting is being presented to.

Energy conservation is dear to artist Eileen Gidman. Through a series of paintings featuring clotheslines, she highlights the concept of energy conservation.

The painting 'Everyday Clothesline' tells a story that evokes nostalgia for
another time. The older style shingled home emphasizes the mood, and the clothesline reel and electric meter are prominently featured to signify the need for protection of our resources.

It is, however, the workman's hanging clothes that first caused Eileen to photograph the scene. She feels this scene speaks of every one's ability, even after a hard day of work, to hang their clothes to dry.

Not only are clotheslines economic and green, they're just so artful!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Textile Card - Columbine

Textile Card - Hand dyed Linen with Stitched Columbine Flower
When the work of an artist is purchased, he or she often knows little beyond that someone liked it enough to buy it.  I had a chance encounter in the local grocery store with a couple who received this card from the purchaser of my work. For artists to hear praise of an our work is so very motivating.
If you had an artist's work that you get pleasure from viewing, don't hesitate to remind them.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Butterfly on Textile

Hand (dye) painted Cotton 6 1/2" square
When painting 6 1/2" squares, several are painted at once on one piece of fabric with thickened dyes. Then the fabric is batched in plastic in a warm place overnight or longer. The fabric is then rinsed, washed and ironed dry. Currently this panel is hanging in my studio and this particular butterfly image grabs my attention. The variegation in the purple suggests reflected light and thus movement. Notice the triad of colours.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Commissioned Hummingbirds

Hand (dye) Painted Square
A delightful little guy isn't he? What a pleasure to work on a commission of bees, birds and butterflies. For this one, I used artist licence and painted the hummingbird to provide an analogous colour scheme of green, blue and purple. Look at all the white background just waiting for free motion stitching!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Watercolour Sunflowers

Watercolour Sunflowers 3 in 1

My neighbour Dorothy plants sunflowers along the edge of her garden every year. The row of flowers are near the road and provide enjoyment for all who drive by. Thank you Dorothy!
Several weeks ago, sitting on the edge of the road I spent a pleasant couple of hours starting these paintings. Today I finished some details on the paintings, sitting in my own garden, as finally my own 'Russian Giant' sunflower heads are open.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

An Almost Blank Canvas

Hand dye painted 4 1/2 X 6 1/2" cotton
ready for embellishment
What fantastic weather we are having which means tourists are still coming to our area. Today when I checked at the Creston Card and Stationery Store where I sell my textile cards, I noted people are still purchasing. That means I best get busy creating! What do you see in this little hand dye painted piece? Free motion stitching will add the details.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

'Scarlet Runner' watercolour (sold)
'Fall Vines' dyed textile (sold)
Cooler weather gets me thinking of certain plants - Virginia Creepers and Sunflowers. Our Virginia Creepers haven't turned red yet so any new art work, containing them, will have to wait. However, I have started painting sunflowers. Not my own sunflowers as we tried a new variety this year and all they have done is grow tall. A ladder would be needed to paint them and perching on it with a paint palette doesn't sound fun! Look for the sunflower painting soon but for now note the difference you can create using two different mediums (watercolour and dye painted textile) using the same subject matter. 

Friday, September 7, 2012

Colour Layout of a Quilt

Quilt Layout
Using Joen Wolfrom's 3 in 1 Color Tool, the fabric pieces for this quilt were separated into 24 different colours. Four inch blocks in each colour family were sewn. Here the blocks are being arranged according to the colour wheel with a gentle blending of the colours from one colour family to the next. Let the sewing begin!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Clotheline Series

 Burano Island, Venice, Italy
the painting that started the 'Clothesline Series' 
This 'Clothesline Series' is an ongoing series which has been in Art Shows and in Galleries in the Kootenays. As the fall weather approaches I already am spending more time painting outdoors and will be sure to include more clotheslines as subject matter. If you are interested in having your clothesline painted contact me at
What is this interest in clotheslines? I have never had a clothes dryer in my home and after seeing the beautiful clothes hanging in Italy I started being proud of that fact. The promotion of energy conservation is my goal and aren't those clotheslines just so artful. I encourage everyone to hang dry their clothes whenever it is practical.
Check out the post of Aug 30, 2012 to see a clothesline that was sketched on a sewing machine!
'Work Clothes' - Sold

'Breeze' - Sold

'Erikson' - Sold

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Over dyeing Dark onto a Light Background

Hand painted with light liquid Procion Dyes
Over painted with thickened Procion Dyes
A new experiment! The light yellow, pink and blue liquid dyes were painted onto cotton that had been soda soaked and dried. The experiment was to try over dyeing without washing in between these two steps. Would there be enough soda ash left to activate the second layer of thickened dyes? YES there was! This opens up lots of possibilities in providing depth by building up layers of dyes. In the past, I had always washed and re-soda soaked each layer. Definitely more experimentation is needed but this result looks promising in being able to complete pieces more easily by eliminating extra steps. If you have ever tried something similar, please email me with your results.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Free-motion Stitched Clothesline

Free-motion Stitched Clothesline -Sold
Watercolour: Clothesline
Clotheslines are works of art as far as I am concerned. A few years back I completed a watercolour painting series about clotheslines because I like them so much and to encourage people to use clotheslines when they can. Clothes dryers are such energy hogs.
The free-motion stitched 4 1/2 X 6" clothesline was completed recently when I found just the right background piece in my hand dyed fabrics.  Likely it will be made into a card but I have made purses and embellished T-shirts too with these small gems.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Watercolour 'Summer Study'

'Summer Study' 10"X14"
What fun these watercolour compilations are. All are painted from life which for me seems to breathe life into the paintings. The two flowers flanking the composition are from a bouquet given to me from a friend's garden. These are flowers I don't have in my garden so they were interesting to study through sketching. I chose a wet-in-wet technique for the one and botanical detail for the other.
The bottom right watercolour is a close up of the trellising for the scarlet runner pole beans in our garden. "Will there be orange blossoms on the beans?", I was asked. "Well no, I had to use artistic license with the colour to fit in with the rest of the sketches." There was a sigh. Perhaps I best complete a painting including oranges.
The centre landscape was chosen for a size change to complete the composition and for me personally, as I had recently hiked the saddle between those two mountains.
For those that like to sketch or paint or perhaps even do textile work, I would encourage you to try a similar format as it allows for use of small bits of time and results in a painting about a certain time in the artist's life.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Colour Assessment of Fabric Stash

24 Colour Assessment
Using 2 1/2" squares, I cut samples from all the fabrics in my stash that showed primarily as one colour. Using Joen Wolfrom's 3 in 1 Color Tool, I separated the fabric into 24 piles. The tool or a colour wheel really is necessary to identify the subtle colour variances. For instance, from the cool reds to the warm reds there is a range of 4 colours. Then each fabric pile was arranged from light to dark.

No surprise that there could be more lights and darks in my personal fabric stash. However, a couple of other very interesting things were identified. The blue, red and yellow colours were very limited. However there were lots of samples of blue-violet, magenta and the warm yellows.

Any ideas what I should do with the sampler now?

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Watercolour Sketch in my Travel Sketchbook

Plein Aire Painting at over 7000 feet - 'Glacier Lake Jewel'
I strive to capture the essence of the feeling associated in being at a place at a particular time. Is it easier to attain when plein aire (on location) painting? Yes, I believe it is.
For this painting, the day was beautifully warm, I was sitting in on an alpine slope, there were bugs buzzing around, the vista was overwhelmingly beautiful (I wept at the sight of it) and the mountain goats were laying up on the glacier. Let me know if you think I captured any of that.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Free-motion Stitched Mtn Goat on Hand Dyed Fabric
In keeping up with the Mountain Goat theme of the last several posts, here is a stitched image. This is a textile card face 4 1/2" X 6 1/2". It is difficult to see when free-motion stitching with the sewing machine on something so small but I find if I can be looking at a sketch while I am sewing my hands follow allow fairly well.
What is most important to do, is to simplify your image. Look for the least amount of lines that will convey what you want to say. I often ask myself, "Do I need this in the picture?"

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Mountain Goat Kid

Mountain Goat Kid
Reference material is best when it comes from your own photos. The photos I took of mountain goats while on a hiking trip will show up in my art work somewhere or perhaps several places: sketching; watercolour painting; or free-motion stitching.
This little one was so cute I just wanted to pet it but of course I did not. The nannies looked very protective of their young.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Uma's Fawn Sketch

Uma's Fawn Sketch while Camping
These delightful little sketches were shown to me by a 6 year old budding artist. A fellow painter and myself had a chance meeting with Uma and her family while hiking in the wilds of British Columbia. We three artists viewed each others' art work and as all artists do, talked about our art supplies.
A doe and her fawn were frequenting their campsite and Uma captured the white spotted fawn perfectly!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Sketching Mountain Goats

Mountain Goat Sketch while
Hiking in British Columbia
Mountain Goat Watercolour
Sketch while Hiking in British
My hiking friend, Margret summed up a recent hiking trek when her son came to pick her up after the trip. "Luke, we've just been to Paradise and back." My feelings exactly!
Sketching on location creates an emotional high for me. I strive to capture the essence of my experience in my paintings and sometimes that requires being prepared for those special moments. Sketching this male goat was accomplished by being prepared the night before and waiting for a sighting in the early morning at 5:30. It was chilly but worth every bit of discomfort!

Free-motion Stitching

4 1/2" X 6 1/2" Textile Card
Eileen Gidman
With the open beak of the bird I feel like I can almost hear him singing.
What a way to practice your free motion stitching on these small cards. I remember how confusing it was just to set up your machine for free-motion stitching? Now my hands slide over the dials and I no longer have to look at my written reference material when the thread tension isn't right.
One of the most memorable things from that first free-motion stitching lesson was finding out that my left hand was not coordinated to work with moving the material in the same way my right hand was. "Practice, practice, practice", I was told will correct that and it really does. You don't need to consciously think about it, but the non dominant hand just naturally learns to coordinate with the right. Writing my name, well........ I still haven't mastered that adequately but then again I haven't practised it either.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Red Geraniums
Look what a wonderful quilter is doing with one of my hand (dye) painted fabrics! Could I have ever gotten those red inserts so perfectly straight and even? Not likely. What an accomplished sewer Margret is! The piece has gone back to Alberta to be completed with embellishments and quilting. Beading might be a possibility. It may be months before I see it again but I will certainly post a picture of it when it is completed.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Assessing Your Fabric Colours

Assessing Your Fabric Colours
Have you ever assessed your 'fabric stash'? Perhaps you gravitate to certain colours at the Quilt Store. What an eye opener it was to formally organize and assess my fabrics using Joen Wolfroem's 3 in 1 Color Tool.

To do this, I cut swatches of all the fabrics I have that show mainly as one colour. Using the colour tool, I identified which of the 24 colours each fabric belonged to. There are either a lot of blue-violet materials available or I gravitate to that colour as I had a lot of  that colour. I found it more challenging to assess the fabrics that are greyed but the Color Tool can help with that.

This exercise I did once before with my quilt guild's collection of scraps and I noted similar things. The lights and darks of almost every colour were very limited. If you are like me you might benefit from purchasing not only the visually appealing mid tones but  also light and dark fabrics in their same colour family.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Step Two Raspberries

8 X 8" Hand Dye Painted Cotton
by Eileen Gidman
After washing the fabric from the first painting session (note previous post of July 27), I added details by activating the dye this time rather than working on soda soaked fabric. Darker colours were added to the raspberries as well calligraphic drawing of details on the leaves. Light areas were left to show the sunlight on the leaves, stems and berries. Those small speckles were added for additional interest to the background.

As well, similar motifs were painted on some pastel green and yellow fabrics. What a difference the brand of fabric made! More on that later. 

Step 1 of Raspberry Square

Step One 
After an hour of picking raspberries, I ended up starting 4 fabric paintings of guess what? Raspberries!
After curing and washing, here is the results of one of the dye painted cotton pieces. With the next step, more detail can be added. In this piece, the dark surrounding the light stems draws attention there. Although this is an attractive look, it is is not exactly where the centre of interest was intended so with the second layer, attention will be given to providing detail to the berries. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

A week of Watercolour Sketches

A Week of Watercolour Sketches
Eileen Gidman
11 X 15" $55

Working in this format is motivating. As noted in the previous post a light wash was applied to the watercolour paper prior to it being divided into squares. Each day last week, I either sketched with a black ink pen something that was of interest to me that day or I completed a sketch in the studio with watercolour washes.
What became evident working in this format was the necessity to consider a whole composition along with each individual watercolour sketch. Creating flow through the watercolours was accomplished with the high contrast of the dark blue with the lights. A complementary colour scheme of orange and blue was adhered to throughout to further add cohesiveness. Note the perennial sweet peas in the upper left in real life are pink. The advantage of painting is the ability to change the composition and colours of what you are painting, to create your own unique artwork.