Tuesday, July 7, 2009

An Attempt or Beginner's Luck


Well, after my good luck with Mr. Parker's Challenge, I thought I would paint my great grandmother, Nana. I went from using a good photo of a man's face without glasses or teeth to trying to paint from a poor quality old photo with glasses and teeth! Plus, it is of someone I know and I have heard it is much harder to paint someone you know. I was so disappointed with this scary painting. I decided to do a second attempt on my great grandmother's painting. I took my time drawing it perfectly, but, as some of my fellow painter friends (i paint with a group on Fridays) mentioned and as I have experienced, the second painting never comes out any better. My second painting is unfinished. Despite the fact that I was so meticulous in gridding off the photo and my paper, once I put the paint on, it doesn't look like my great grandmother!!! What I have learned is that the second painting has made me think that the first painting (this one) captured my great grandmother's personality. The second one is so stiff like I have experienced when painting even a second floral. I just get tighter on the second attempt. So believe it or not, I am going to rest on this one for a while and try it again for a third attempt.

This painting became so overworked. (Note to self, put the brush down and walk away). It was amazing how I added a tad of green to the lips to shape them and it would literally become a smile or become just an open mouth. Or it would end up looking like an ad for teeth whitening. I learned so much how I could change the mouth by just the tiniest bit of paint. This is what I love about watercolor. It really is like magic. You can really make those cheeks pop off the page if you want. In the photo, Nana is smiling happily at my brother. Sometimes when I look at this painting, I see her soft smile, and other times it is just an open mouth. But, I do want to capture her smile so others can see what I remember.

Last side note, my great grandmother didn't need any botox!!! Her deep wrinkles are at her eyes and her mouth. She must have never frowned because her forehead is as smooth as a good bald head!

I hope this encourages you when you are not happy with your painting. All comments/advice to fix this painting welcome!

Thanks for stopping by!

11x14 original watercolor by Liana Yarckin


  1. Lovely and kind gran! And a lot of character in your painting too. I love the architectural watercolours, Liana. Thanks for following me, do you live somewhere in the US?

  2. Liana - My mom, sister and I just viewed your art...how very beautiful. We especially loved this painting. Thanks for the prayers for my dad. I hope to see you soon as it has been a long time. Tell everyone that I said hello. Take care! Love, Melanie


Thanks so much for taking the time to leave your thoughts. I love hearing from you!