Marybeth Heikes

Paintings in Watercolor & Mixed Media

Des Moines in Collage and Watercolor

September 27, 2009

Lately, my interest has turned to architectural shapes, and I find it challenging to present the forms in two widely different mediums: collage and watercolors.

Mondrians Des Moines.The first image is the window reflection of 801 Grand in Des Moines, which reminded me of Mondrian’s geometric paintings. The square window shapes and the azure sky popped out at me when walking downtown. The curvilinear building shapes against the blueness of the sky also attracted my attention. The design was already there and waiting to be painted! I took the photo in 2000 and it has been in my files that long! Another difference with this collage is that I’ve used a canvas board instead of 300# watercolor paper. Warping is a big problem with collages since I dilute the gloss medium a bit. This worked out quite well and I’m very pleased with the finished painting.

Brownstones & Balconies.The second painting is of Court Ave and First Street — the beginning of the Farmers Market. We’ve visited a number of times and I’ve always wanted to capture the bridge and reflections of the buildings in the river. This design is painted in the traditional method of watercolors.

Two different expressions in two different mediums. I like working in both — the bright textured acrylic paint and simpler shapes, and the traditional realism of watercolors.