After Artober, I continued into November with a Skillshare project challenge. I got about halfway through and was so burnt out on painting that I just stopped for a while. I hardly painted anything for at least a month, and then I got busy with the holidays and a visit to South Dakota, and so on. But now I’m back on it, and I got a fancy new scanner, so I’ll be able to post more here. First, here’s the last thing I painted before my long break:

I think there’s a good chance that this’ll be the best thing I’ll ever paint. It’s based on a picture I took of a woodpecker that hung out for a while on the light pole in our back yard. I’ll replace this picture with a proper scan at some point…)

Once I decided I wanted to paint again, I started to experiment with gouache, which is kind of like opaque watercolor. Here was my first gouache painting, based on an Art Sherpa tutorial I’d previously painted in acrylic:

I really like this one, and I immediately became a fan of gouache. Here’s another one I finished the other day:

This one’s from another Art Sherpa tutorial (I really enjoy them!), though my coloring is a good bit different as I was working with a super-limited 12-color palette of tiny Holbein tubes. I’ve already begun the expansion process: I ordered tubes of Winsor & Newton phthalo blue and magenta from Jerry’s Artarama yesterday. I like how gouache works in some ways like acrylic (mainly that it’s just opaque, so I can paint over it multiple times) so I can follow tutorials meant for acrylics. Gouache is also far more forgiving than transparent watercolor.

Speaking of watercolor, I’ve been doing some of that, too. Both of these are based on tutorials by Painting with David.

Neither of these are my best work by any means, but at least I’m getting back into it! I think my next original project will be a watercolor of this photo I took near Hot Springs in the Fall:

We’ll see when that happens. At this point, I’m mostly looking forward to those two new tubes of gouache so I can work on some more colorful, less realistic paintings.