Step into Hundertwasser’s Ecstasy!

An art journaling mini-course inspired by Hundertwasser! By Peony and Parakeet

An Austrian architect and artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser inspired me to create this art journaling mini-course. Painter’s Ecstasy has just been released as a part of Imagine Monthly.

Getting into Hundertwasser’s Head

Creating the mini-course took a lot of time. I didn’t want to just paint something in Hundertwasser’s style. I wanted to find the elements in his style that support intuitive painting. I wanted to discover the essentials that allow anyone to produce their own work, not just copies. I also wanted to point out the most important nuances that make his paintings so appealing.

Even if Hundertwasser’s paintings (go check my Pinterest board: “Hundertwasser Hunger”) are so clearly shaped and striking, getting into his head wasn’t easy! I made a lot of sketches and experimented with various art supplies. These art journaling pages are some of the sketches:

Hundertwasser inspired sketches by Peony and Parakeet

Structures from Buildings and Maps

Hundertwasser’s education in architecture affected the way he painted. He used structures from buildings and maps to express himself.  His paintings tell stories about how humans relate to their environment. It made me think how my desire to paint glassware and ceramics is due to my studies in industrial design. However, I truly enjoyed the techniques discovered from Hundertwasser’s paintings! I am definitely going to continue using those! It’s mostly just watercolor, isn’t it amazing?!

Have some Hundertwasser in your art journal! An art class by Peony and Parakeet

3 Months, 3 Artists

Each of the mini-course has now presented an artist. I must admit that I have been a bit selfish here, picking out artists that truly inspire myself. Luckily I have been blogging for a long time. It hasn’t probably been any surprise that January’s artist was Alphonse Mucha and February’s William Morris.  But my love for Hundertwasser’s paintings might have been a bit hidden. Now when I have found out how he created his paintings, it won’t be a secret anymore!

Imagine Monthly Spring 2016, an art class by Peony and Parakeet

Have Some Hundertwasser in Your Art Journal!

You can still hop on Imagine Monthly and get all the 3 mini-courses right after the purchase. There are three more mini-courses to come and the community is just wonderful to be in! It is so delightful to see everybody’s unique versions of the techniques shown in the class. Purchase here!

From Intuitive to Intentional Painting

The Phantom of the Opera, a mixed media painting by Peony and Parakeet

This is my latest mixed media painting called “The Phantom of the Opera.” Just saw the musical in The Finnish National Opera!  I don’t know about you, but when I go to see a performance like that, I know that it will appear in my art one way or another. With this blog post, I want to challenge you to think what is intuitive and what is intentional in art. And – can they be combined?

Day 1 – Watercolors

It was a sunny winter day when I started the painting. A friend from the UK was visiting me, and we were chatting while I painted the first layers. With watercolors, like many times before.

Watercolor set

I love how well watercolors support intuitive painting. You can just splash here and there and then get inspired by the result. In this phase, I tend to choose the colors quickly, based on what feels good. I would call this phase very intuitive also because I don’t usually have no idea about how the result would look.

Beginning a painting with watercolors, by Peony and Parakeet

After splashing watercolors on the paper, I tried to get something a bit more intentional out of it: distinct shapes, strokes and color areas.

Creating a mixed media painting, by Peony and Parakeet

The painting looked like it could be a still life with wine grapes and some fruits. But I did not have more time to continue with the painting, so I saved it in my album. I love to create 12 by 12 paintings as they fit on a regular scrapbooking album. I also love the square shape as it is easy to change the orientation of the picture in the middle of the process.

Day 2 – Acrylic Paints

About a week later I picked out the painting again. This time, I wanted to add some acrylic paint to it. I find the combination of transparent watercolor and non-transparent acrylic paint very attractive. When touching the acrylic paint tubes, I get ideas about color mixes that would work with the watercolor background. I would call this pretty intuitive step too.

Acrylic paint tubes

As I am a very detail-oriented person when painting, I try to be bold when painting with acrylics. Broad strokes add more interest to detailed paintings.

Creating a mixed media painting, by Peony and Parakeet

In the end, the painting still looked like a still life, but I wasn’t quite confident about the orientation of the painting.

Creating a mixed media painting, by Peony and Parakeet

Here you can see the difference between the end of day 1 (watercolors) and the end of day 2 (acrylics).

Day 3 – Colored Pencils

Because I love details, I also love to use colored pencils. With colored pencils, it’s easy to add little nuances here and there, and I also like the look of pencil strokes on the painting.

Colored Pencils

Day 3 was a day after day 2, but it was still before I had seen the musical. When I work with colored pencils, I am often very intentional. First, I had an idea to create wine glasses of the two round elements, but then I changed the orientation of the painting and saw lamps in the ceiling!

Creating an intuitive painting, by Peony and Parakeet

Which one do you like the best: the wine glasses or the lamps?

Day 4 – Acrylic Paints + Colored Pencils

Day 4 was after the musical. I got an idea from one of the scenes. The painting continued with acrylics expressing the famous chandelier crash!

Creating a mixed media painting, by Peony and Parakeet

So far I had been pretty intentional but then changed to intuitive. I played the music and tried to get into it as much as I could. I used both acrylic paints and colored pencils.

Here’s the result again:

The Phantom of the Opera, a mixed media painting by Peony and Parakeet

Intuitive Painting – Guess What!

The story doesn’t end here! While photographing the finished painting, I glanced at my feet and saw the same color scheme in my socks! I had just finished them before Day 1 and worn them ever since. So, this painting actually started when I was picked the yarn from my stash for the socks. No, wait – it began when I bought the wool that I spun to the yarn …!

Handmade socks and mixed media painting share the same color scheme, by Peony and Parakeet

Combining intuitive with intentional is a lot of fun! It’s the best cure for getting rid of stiffness in the result. The intuitive parts allow you to feel free when painting; the intentional parts bring more clarity to the painting.

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Roses with Colored Pencils – Draw with Me!

Roses drawing by Peony and Parakeet, watch the video of drawing and coloring roses with colored pencils!

I know some of you prefer abstract themes, some more realistic. But maybe you are like me who loves to combine realistic themes, for example, roses, with more intuitive and abstracts shapes.

Copying? – No!

There are people who say that you have to copy photos to create realistic art. I don’t believe that. If you fairly accurately know the structure of the subject, there’s no need to have a photo in hand. Instead, you can focus on your point of view and express how you experience the subject.

Perspective Drawing? – No!

Some people say that you need to fully master perspective and shadowing to make your drawing look dimensional. I don’t believe that either. If you know how to work with colors, you can do a lot.

Blind Spots? – Most probably!

I do believe that most beginner artists have blind spots. Maybe you use too raw colors, maybe your every element is similar in size, maybe your lines are too stiff, maybe you get discouraged in the very beginning when not knowing what to create. Whether you love abstract or realistic, the blind spots are often the same. My workshops help you to get through the blind spots.

Coloring Roses – Draw with me!

But even if the workshops didn’t interest you, grab your colored pencils and draw the roses with me! Namely, thinking doesn’t boost your imagination and grow your skills in the way doing does.

Get more instructions for colored pencils: Buy Coloring Freely!

14 Answers about Creating Art

14 Answers about Creating Art - 14 short videos by Peony and Parakeet

14 DAYS – 14 ANSWERS about creating art! To celebrate my upcoming workshop Inspirational Drawing, I have been publishing a new video every day for two weeks. These videos are short answers to the questions people usually ask from me. The last one is about artistic growth: how to prevent being stuck and keep on growing. Watch the whole series!

#1 How to start?

#2 From Mind to Paper

#3 Not As Good As Them

#4 Inner Critic

#5 Disappointment

#6 Avoiding Stiffness

#7 Finishing Artwork

#8 Artistic Talent

#9 Less Realism

#10 Too Messy

#11 More Beauty

#12 Popularity 

#13 Personal Style

#14 Artistic Growth

Learn to express more with enjoyable, free handdrawing!
Sign up for Inspirational Drawing!
Registration will close soon, at midnight (PST) on Saturday February 20th!