Marybeth Heikes

Paintings in Watercolor & Mixed Media

Morning Market

Morning Market

Watercolor

The inspiration for this painting were the people and sights at the downtown Des Moines Farmers Market. One needs to go more than once to take in the vendors, people and food at the summer market in an ever-changing event. There is much to experience and enjoy!

I used my camera to snap numerous photographs for reference. My goal was to capture a small part of the event. I was interested in the figurative shapes among the street vendors and buildings. I use my photos and do lots of sketches, usually the same size of the watercolor paper I plan to use. It is best to simplify and edit. The sketch is messy and I want capture the essence and scribble away, making big shapes and work in the general value design. I find it easier to transfer to the watercolor paper by taping the sketch to a window or door and taping the watercolor paper over the sketch. I do not do small thumbnails or copy my photo.

Drawing gets my creative juices flowing and while sketching I am thinking about colors I will use and where I will begin painting — what caught my interest and seems most important in the design. I soak the paper and begin without a definite direction and allow things to happen on the paper so that I will be challenged and surprised when I finish. I usually do not finish the painting in one sitting, but rather let it sit for a few days to think about the direction I am going with it and how to proceed.

I have not done many figurative paintings and very much wanted to do one in a casual setting. This was a perfect situation. I edited my photo — there was too much information. Once I transferred the sketch, I usually wet the shape again so that the pigments blend into interesting colors on the paper. I do not usually glaze colors, but paint in one pass. Pigments seem to get muddy if you layer certain colors. Many times I will dip my wet brush directly into the tube and get lots of nice juicy paint! The tree shape was painted very wet and I used a lot of different colors and allowed them to blend together. The rest of the painting proceeded in that method, connecting figures together and the buildings.

Posted in Midwest Life on May 3, 2018.

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Original 24″ × 18″

White metal frame (29.5" x 24.5") with white mat

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Print 8″ × 10″

Actual image size is 7.5″×10″.

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Print 11″ × 14″

Actual image size is 10.5″×14″.

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Actual image size is 15″×20″.

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