Monday, March 21, 2011


So after my 28 Flowers in 28 Days Challenge, here is what I've learned....

1.  Painting negative shapes can really bring a painting to life.
2.  The best greens come from mixing colors.  (Although I love Sap Green)

3.  Clean water is key and it helps to have a sink nearby (I don't).
4.  A spray bottle is handy for wetting your paints and paper.
5.  It helps to have multiple surface areas to rotate paintings your working on.

6.  A space heater comes in handy for not only staying warm, but for a quick dry also.
7.  Always have a plan before you paint.

8.  "Uglies" (i.e. bad paintings) are inevitable and necessary to appreciate the "beauties".
9.  Step away from your painting frequently to critique it.
10. Paintings photograph best on an overcast day outside.
11. Jack Johnson is wonderful music to listen to while painting.
12. Dog noses smear dry paintings.

I had someone ask me if I would do this answer was yes, I would, but not for another year.  But now I think this challenge makes me want to paint as much as I can because I've grown as a watercolor artist and have learned so much by painting daily. 

Those who follow my blog may have noticed I haven't posted anything in a month.  My focus turned to my son's school yearbook which I am the advisor for and today is my deadline.  After today, I'll be continuing work on a piece which is meant to be kept secret.  I'll post it once it's been given to the recipient.

So thanks again to all who followed my challenge and supported me through your wonderful comments and critiques.  A special thank you to those who purchased one or more of my paintings from this challenge.  And a extra special thank you to Maria Reichert at Maria's Watercolor for prompting me to take on a 28 days painting challenge in February!


  1. You've learned a lot! I agree especially with nr. 7 and 8, because I tend to forget those points. Good luck with your new work and your son's yearbook!

  2. Love all your steps. I think that the more one paints or draws the better they become! I love your flowers. You are a very talented lady. :-)

  3. Congratulations on your achievement,Gretchen! I admire both your work and your dedication. Thank you for sharing all your lessons learned...even though I no longer have a dog:-)

  4. So glad the challenge taught you many things. I was watching you and Maria with interest - and grow you certainly did. Bravo !

  5. Good insights and a touch of humor too...the dry nosed dog! Congrats on completing your challenge too.

  6. These are really nice, Gretchen and it looks like you learned so much from doing the challenge!

  7. WOW what a 28 days... I enjoyed seeing your beautiful daily paintings A big congratulations on the challenge.

  8. Dear Gretchen,
    Congratulations!! Please take care and put your most important things, people first. And...keep enjoying watercolor!!
    Cheers, Sadami

  9. Congratulations on a wonderful job to have a spectacular form of watercolor painting, very good work, greetings.

  10. Judy, 7 & 8 are big ones for me too Judy.

    Thanks Crystal. I agree, the more you paint, the better you get!

    Thank you Christiane. I have two dogs and I enjoy their company while painting.

    Thanks for following along our challenge Pat!

    Thank you Linda!

    Sheryl and Dors....thanks for following along. I enjoy following your art as well!

    Sadami...great advice and I most definitely put my most important people boys.

    Greetings and thank you Ricardo!

    Hello Peter and thank you!

  11. Very interesting, and very true, what you learned from your 28 days challenge... expecially the last one! Ciao!

  12. Oh Gretchen, what a wonderful 28 days of flowers you completed! Such beautiful work, I must agree, a year between this challenge sounds just about right! And I think I will listen to a little Jack Johnson today....thanks for joining me, you made it so much more fun!



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