Highlight – Grotti v2 – 2011 – click for full view on site!

Though the fish in question has gone to that great fish tank in the sky she was always a beautiful and friendly girl.

I do art. You know that, right? I would forgive you if you had forgotten after how long it has been all about gaming and not so much about the creative side of things. I think this piece was the first one that really allowed me to see the potential of watercolour in a style that I could manipulate. For some reason, most likely due to detail, I figured that the combination of ink and watercolour would be a good idea and I wasn’t wrong about that. I continued to develop this style in a myriad of ways with The Sacred Cow (highlighted previously) and others.

I had done the first version in pastel (and no you may not see it) and it wasn’t really hitting the quality or the result I wanted. I was thinking about other things I could use and how I could get the desired result and I narrowed down that I needed bold, flowing, expressive colours. What did I have that could do that? Watercolour!

In my usual way of doing things I started by dissecting the colours and trying to find a collection of colours that allowed me to achieve the desired result. Of course, until you added the grey and black markings, this was just the oranges and the light pinks. While the addition of the darker markings was the point where I thought I’d be scrapping this piece and it would never see the light of day again. However, the brushes were in my favour and I managed to pull off the desired result without destroying anything in the process. Oddly enough, as noted above, that was the entire reason I wanted to use watercolour- but it was also the reason I didn’t feel it would work out as I didn’t know if I could do it. My brain is a strange place. So strange.
The original line work for this piece was pretty much an outline which was also an interesting aspect in hindsight.

Given my inexperience with watercolour at the time I was relying on the ability to fully create depth, textures, markings, and many other things purely with watercolour as the line work wasn’t really adding any. I mean the concept made sense. It was a logical idea. But I was relying on my ability to do something I’d never done before with a desirable result the first time out.

But, I think, when all is said and done, that is what makes this such a great piece for me. I tried to do something new and unique and I wanted to achieve something which I did. So, even though it’s a bit older and a bit rough ’round the edges it’s a rare example of how my experimentation led to something amazing. Something which I’m proud of. It’s also odd that this, The Sacred Cow, and Wisdom (three pieces I am notably proud of) are all animal portraits.

Maybe that was a calling I missed in life? Or maybe I just needed something new and different and that wasn’t fantasy or what have you to really get to grips with the limits of my ability. Back then I was of the mindset that I didn’t have limits and I could do whatever I wanted. Maybe that was a good way to be?

Have a nice weekend, all!


Art, design, and the like found herein (unless otherwise specified) is drawn and owned by David Wilkshire (also credited as Moggie) from 2006 to present date.

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