Tag Archives: travel

Costa Rica Watercolor Painting

Hello! I have a new painting to share with you. It was a gift for my husband’s birthday this weekend, and now that he has unwrapped it, I can share it with you!

costaricafirst

I chose a viewpoint from a restaurant we visited on the road. I don’t remember the name of the restaurant (or even where we were, exactly) but the restaurant had a huge, wooden porch with this view surrounding it. I usually prefer to sketch lightly in pencil first, but I didn’t think this would work well for this painting. Pencil tends to bleed into light watercolor washes, and it can ruin the color work. So I took a risk and lightly painted the outline in light green, because I needed to have some basic idea of where all of the foliage would go. The view was panoramic, and the horizontal orientation of the painting was not exactly the right dimensions for the picture, so I had to change some elements.

halffinished

I started adding in more details from right to left. It was especially difficult painting in the high contrasts of light and dark. Dark shadows in watercolor tend to look muddy, and it’s never easy for me to figure out the right balance for them.

costarica2

For all of the intense labor I put into the landscape, I was so exhausted by the time I got to the sky, that I painted it as loosely as possible. The irony of course, is that I think the sky looks the best! I always find that the less I “care” about how I’m painting, the better it turns out. It is not easy to kick back and just paint “carelessly,” because there is a certain level of unconscious focus that needs to occur. I can’t explain it, and people have various names for it, like “in the zone,” “meditation,” “in flow,” etc. I prefer to say “unconscious focus.”

costarica1

Now that I’m looking at it, I see how compressed the landscape looks. It’s more exaggerated than I thought it would be, but that is not necessarily bad. It has a lusciousness to it, I suppose, even though now I’m looking at all of the flaws. It’s always difficult for me to say “it’s done!” but this one is done!

-A.

Australia Watercolors

Hi all. I’m resurrecting a project from my past – some watercolor paintings inspired by my honeymoon in Australia. I finished one, but not quite the other. You can probably guess which on is incomplete!

malandapainting

This is a painting of the farmland of Malanda. It was one of our favorite spots. Completely beautiful and idyllic, with rolling hills, lush greenery, and plenty of cows.

australianriverpainting

Yes, this is the incomplete one! This was a riverbed in Queensland, on a hiking trail we visited. It had a particularly blue-green color to the water, and the rocks with smooth and white with deep gray shadows. It was quite secluded, except for the flies.

I may or may not finish the second painting…I’m busy working on a birthday watercolor for someone special’s birthday!

-A.

Colorful World Travel Wedding Suite

Hello! I have always said I love to do unusual, unique projects, and today I have a good one. I have for you a wedding suite that was inspired by travel, bright color, and modern style. Marrying many design ideas together can be tough, but the result was truly unique and beloved by the couple and the wedding attendants.

When two of my friends became engaged, I was so thrilled with the opportunity to design wedding stationery and signage. This project consisted of guestbook signs, menu card, program, table cards, thank you cards, and a welcome sign. The palette consisted of saturated violet, orange and teal, with clean sans-serif typefaces. The bride had a world map outlined in colorful paint splatter, and wanted to incorporate that visual style into the travel-themed wedding. I designed signage (not pictured) that included a “Come Travel The World With Us!” sign encouraging guests to sign a guestbook, a small instructional sign guiding guests to pin where they had traveled from, and a “Choose a seat, not a side…” chalkboard style sign. The thank you cards featured “thank you” in different languages, and the table cards featured illustrated landmarks from cities that the couple had traveled to. The menu card, program, and escort cards all continued the colorful travel theme, with hints of the paint splatter and hearts inscribed with continents.

The thank you cards, programs, escort cards, and menu cards were printed digitally on Cougar White Opaque #70; and the table cards on Cougar White Opaque #100 cover. The signs were printed on canvas, vinyl, and Cougar White Opaque paper.

serbowedding_closeblur serbowedding_leftangleclose serbowedding_leftnoribbon serbowedding_longangle serbowedding_longclose serbowedding_lowangle serbowedding_lowcloseup serbowedding_menuclose serbowedding_paintclose serbowedding_programclose serbowedding_programcover serbowedding_ribbonrightangle serbowedding_rightcorner serbowedding_tablecardclose serbowedding_thankyouclose serbowedding_upnoribbon serbowedding_upperleftangle serbowedding_upribbon

I’ll add photos of the signage if I can get it. The biggest challenge was definitely the table cards: finding and creating notable skylines from cities of all sizes was difficult, but I managed to create vectors out of whatever imagery was available. It was a bit of challenge finding different typefaces to represent “thank you” in multiple alphabets too. But I learned that the best way to tackle these large scale projects is to prepare and schedule extra time – I always end up using it!

-A.K.