|Painting in the Car|
Recently I taught a workshop on Watercolor Journals. On second morning of the 2-day workshop I invited anyone who wanted to join me to meet at The Filling Station, a cafe across the street from the studio. A asked that they bring a pen and journal and find something interesting to draw and later paint. We met early and the 9 of us were perhaps the quietest group they have ever had. Since so many were drawing, no objects were gathered and I ended up with too many isolated elements - again. Banding to the rescue. I chose the pattern of the tablecloth as a background to both animate the page and unify all the elements.
|The Filling Station|
In the top one, I had just added the background checkered band when I realized I wanted more color and somehow incorporate the name of the restaurant. The name was easy since my checks had the right number of spaces. For the color band above the checks, red was out since the stripe would cross 2 other red items. I chose the burnt orange since it repeated the sauce color in the middle. But look carefully at the shadow areas beneath the bottles in the top one. Then look at the finished piece - I added no more color to those shadows but the orange in them suddenly is more noticeable. Repetition of color is important and this is a good example. I also changed the area to the right of the date. In the journal that date was too far to the left. I didn't like it at all but there it was. I solved that by adding "Yum!" Probem solved.
So...if you have a page where you need to gather the subject matter and make it more cohesive, try a band. It needn't be a straight band as in these two examples. It can meander just as well. And the best lesson is that you can paint and draw in all sorts of unusual places. Keep a small journal close at hand. That's all you need to keep you occupied and happy. I can't be grumpy if I'm working in a journal no matter the circumstance.