Tag Archives: life painting

Tess and Maya


I had a lovely surprise yesterday.    Tess and Maya (the two models in this image) have returned from S. America after three years and will be modelling again this summer….

This prompted me to tell the story of Tess and Maya.


Three years ago, when I was doing a lot of life painting at the Boathouse Studios,  I arrived to find a  lovely young model accompanied by her Mother who was looking after her new baby.

During the break, the young girl said that she would have to go home because of the baby….and so it was suggested that they model together.


The studio was very warm and quiet.   Little Maya settled in with her Mother and totally relaxed….


This was quite a fast watercolour…..and here you will see that I am adding a dark into the negative space, surrounding Mother and child. 


Which leads me to the final frame.

Such a beautiful experience….and so now I look forward to painting Tess and Maya again, only this time little Maya is three years old….


Another one of those days when the magical hummingbirds were definitely hovering:)


A Bientôt

Less is More.

Perhaps a real understanding of less being more, comes with age.    I have certainly found this to be true with painting and life in general. 

I met someone yesterday who is at a turning point, and wanting to put more emphasis on being an artist rather than endlessly driving from A to B and organising a house full of STUFF.

This quick watercolour study of a model at the Boathouse Studio is an example of less being more.    Note that all the techniques I have been showing in my tutorials are in this quick sketch. 




Perhaps one of the many lessons we learn with watercolour painting is the art of letting go.    Getting out of the way and allowing the paint to do its own thing. 

It was only when I began to understand this concept in my own life that I was able to let go of all the unnecessary stuff, which in turn freed me up to immerse myself into the creative process. 

In today’s fast paced world, it’s very easy to live our lives in boxes, all the time being plugged into some sort of technology.    A little of this is necessary, however, too much of it deadens the senses….and consequently our creativity. 

This quote from the book Buddhist Offerings, says it all. 

‘Our five senses are like openings through which we receive all the perceptions that are then transformed into concepts and ideas.’ 

Wishing everyone a magical hummingbird weekend:)



A Bientôt