The Leaping Green Spirit of Trees – Paint Out

Everyone who enjoys thinks that the principal thing to the tree is the fruit, but in point of fact the principal thing to it is the seed. — Herein lies the difference between them that create and them that enjoy.

–Friedrich Nietzsche

Watercolor on Textured surface – 6.5″ x 11″

Linda Halcomb is hosting a paint out today on her blog.  The theme is “the leaping green spirits of trees”.  I figured this would be a wonderful time to try something new.

Leslie White has been making some wonderful paintings using a paper called masa.  I didn’t do what Leslie does,  but I was in fact very much inspired by Leslie when I did this.  Thursday, I grabbed some yellow tissue paper, like you put in gift bags, and I tore off some large pieces and wrinkled it up.  I taped off the edges of a piece of 240 lb cold press  watercolor paper with painter’s tape.  I brushed Mod Podge all over it and started applying the tissue  with more Mod Podge, ending with a final coat.

I let it dry over night, then placed it under books another 24 hrs to flatten it.  Saturday, I started to dab watercolor on it, and to my amazement…. it worked.  I actually thought the watercolor would bead up on the slick surface, but it didn’t.  YAY!

I know there are problems here, such as no real depth past the stairs.   (But I had so much fun.)    If you have any hint on how I can fix this, just let me know in your comment.  I’d appreciate that.  The reference photo is by impshlady at WetCanvas.

Be sure to go look around at the other artists that participate in Linda’s Paint Out.  The links can be found here.

Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

(October 15, 1844 – August 25, 1900) was a 19th-century German philosopher, poet, composer and classical philologist. He wrote critical texts on religion, morality, contemporary culture, philosophy and science, displaying a fondness for metaphor, irony and aphorism.



14 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. bad jones rising
    Jun 21, 2011 @ 19:53:19

    Oh my! You use masa paper like Leslie! I love the way this paper works with paint. This is a really nice piece. I love that hue/shade of green.


  2. drawingpins
    Jun 21, 2011 @ 12:23:01

    Hi Beth,

    Awesome. And another piece using masa! it’s the first I’ve heard of it and I’m getting excited about trying it out in the near future. Your painting almost has almost a plaster feel to it which I love.


  3. Nuno
    Jun 21, 2011 @ 11:46:17

    Beth, yesterday I was in a hurry and I didn’t leave a comment on your blog. I like very much the colors and also the composition in your painting. And the use of that textured paper is awesome! Thanks for sharing.


  4. asmalltowndad
    Jun 20, 2011 @ 13:10:12

    Whining! Whining! Who’s whining, I just wanted to say how beautiful your painting was. Whining, tell me I’m whining, well, I never!


  5. lesliepaints
    Jun 20, 2011 @ 09:45:26

    WOW! Beth. This is fantastic. …and I disagree with you on the depth. That light at the top of the stairs just pulls me through that opening and creates a great feeling of depth. I think it is awesome when someone’s work inspires a new idea in another. This is awesome and I’ll have to try more things with tissue paper.


    • Beth Parker
      Jun 20, 2011 @ 09:54:02

      Thanks, Leslie! Daniel Smith is having a free shipping day today, so I ordered some Masa paper. I’m going to have a go at that now. Thanks for always inspiring me to try new things, my friend!

      By the way…. I painted 8 paintings over the weekend. Whoo Hoo!!!


  6. Beth
    Jun 20, 2011 @ 08:44:16

    I think it’s beautiful. You’ve captured great depth in the forest. To add a bit more depth to the center pathway, you could always add a small gazebo like archway. I like leaving a bit to the imagination as well so when looking at this piece, one can imagine to themselves what lies beyond the stairway:) Beautiful texture and color.


  7. lindahalcombfineart
    Jun 20, 2011 @ 08:37:10

    Beth, this is brilliant. I love the glow and the bold color. What a fun process and clearly you learned alot. One way to develop it further would be to work with other media – maybe add texture and depth with your Inktense pencils or even pour a little acrylic or watercolor or apply some more layers of paper (different colors?) in the center? Just some ideas. I mess up so often I am becoming a master at fix-it. Now if I could just become a master at painting so I don’t have to fix it!


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