ORIGINAL CONTEMPORARY PAINTING
BY COLLEEN SANCHEZ
WATERCOLOR ON PAPER
22 X 15
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I've been imagining doing this painting for a couple of years. One day while visiting one of Hawaii Island's amazing coastal Botanical Gardens, I came across this grove of Heliconia. The only way to get near them presented a wonderful backlit scene. I finally worked through this group of photos over the holidays and finally decided to attempt painting them in watercolor.
The challenge to save my whites and lights was huge because I do not ever use any masking and trying to get the edges of the stalks somewhat neat was really something else. I don't have anything against masking, it just doesn't seem to work for me so I don't have it anymore. In order that I didn't suffer too many frustrations, I worked on Arches 300 lb paper and did the painting in many short sessions over several weeks. Sometimes I would put it away for a few days so I could re-look at it with fresh eyes and try to determine if my original plan was on track. There was so much stuff going on in the background in the original Heliconia Grove I thought is best to leave it out and handle the background in an abstract fashion. I wanted the focus to be on the heliconia themselves and my little friend.
If you ever visit the big island of Hawaii and love gardens make a visit to this one part of your itinerary, you won't be disappointed..