In the August 2008 issue of Watercolor Artist, Kathy Collins challenged readers to bring a fresh look to their work by finishing a painting in just one sitting. “Start painting when you have just one hour before you need to leave the house for work or for an appointment, set an alarm or glance at a clock and stop when the bell rings or the hour arrives, or have a painting partner nearby tell you when the painting is finished, and stop when she says you’re done. Whatever your watermedia style, try painting with a larger brush than you normally use. You may be surprised to find your work is looser and fresher,” she said.
Artists across the country responded to her call and sent images of their Speedy Delivery paintings to our editorial offices. We were thrilled to discover that many of our readers took on the challenge in painting groups. Ken Lampard, Lindsey Stead, Cheryl Quist and Sheila Schaetzle are pictured here with their Speedy Delivery paintings. Lampard remarks of the process, “Four friends and fellow art students (our instructor is Sharon Williams) met to take on the Creativity Workshop, Speedy Delivery challenge. We spent the first hour explaining our planning process–value studies, composition challenges, color decisions. Then, we set to work painting for one hour. It was fun to watch the paintings go from white paper to completed paintings in such a short time.” We want to thank this talented group and all of the artists who shared their work and their stories with us.
Choosing our winner and our finalists was a difficult, but rewarding process. We’re now pleased to announce that Mary Ann Boysen of Mississippi is the winner of our $100 gift certificate to Jerry’s Artarama with her painting, The Watering Trough at the Barn. Our runners-up include Vera Beaumont, Marty Ratigan and Donna Elio. Enjoy a gallery of the winning works and the stories behind the paintings (below) and don’t forget to enter your work to win the next Creativity Workshop. Click here to find out how.
Winner: Mary Ann Boysen
“I painted The Watering Trough at the Barn without drawing in a simple, colorful style.”
“My method with Flowers was to draw the outline of the upper, white flowers. Then, using a 1 1/2-inch flat brush and rich, dark pigments, I painted the top portion of the dry paper. I strengthened these colors in the upper right area while the pigment was still wet. I then used some of the same pigments, with more water, to complete the flowers. This was done in about an hour. I refined and added some details after the paper dried.”
“This particular challenge was really a blessing to me, as it gave me a solution to a problem I’ve been struggling with. I love to paint people, particularly dancers, but I too often get caught up in worrying about getting things like body proportions or hand positions exactly right. When I go down that path, I lose the movement and emotion that inspired me to do the painting in the first place. This time, I did a very loose sketch, then set an egg timer to one hour. I had no idea how I was going to pull it off, but decided to just dive in. After 53 minutes, I realized that nothing else I did would contribute in a good way, so I made myself stop. I’m happier with Halfa than with any painting I’ve done prior. Thanks for getting me to where I wanted to go!”
“Thanks for giving me the opportunity to show you my work. I always find that my best work comes from working quickly. Summer Serenity was painted using a 1/2-inch flat only and done in about 30 minutes, allowing for a small amount of time for letting layers dry while I had a soda and surfed the Web.”
Send us your Creativity Workshop Activity for a chance to win your own $100 gift certificate from Jerry’s Artarama. Send a JPEG image (with a resolution of 72 dpi) of your painting to firstname.lastname@example.org. To see the latest Creativity Workshop Activities and a gallery of reader responses, click here.