What Color Is the Moon?

One of the most important things for me right now is keeping my art time simple. In the past, I’ve taken on too many different projects, too many different art history books to read, too many different media to explore. With art, I’ve learned, it’s easy to become overwhelmed, to have so many things going on that I feel disoriented and unsure of what to do and when to do it.

My fall art program is designed to be as simple as possible. I’m focusing on drawing, oil painting, and watercolor. For now, I’ll be setting aside my alcohol inks, my acrylic paints and inks, and all other media other than graphite, oil paints, and watercolor — which does include my gansai, of course.

In the past, weekends have usually been times for creative exploration. I would dig out an old issue of Artist magazine, look at the articles and demonstrations, and I would put together my own art project based on what I had read. It was fun, but those projects added to my already crowded art agenda.

Now, I’m setting that aside, too. I want to relax. I want weekends to be fun and creative, but free from any “real art” projects. So, when I came into the studio yesterday, I felt a bit at loose ends. I straightened a few things around the studio… but, then… what?

As I browsed through my email, the answer came. I had my “Friday Freebie” from The Graphics Fairy waiting to be downloaded. As soon as I downloaded it, I knew how I would spend the morning. I wanted to color the illustration.

I printed the image out — using regular copy paper — and started with watercolor pencils. I changed my mind, though, and grabbed my gansai. I enjoyed sitting at the table, coloring in this simple illustration:

My husband then asked, “What’s that? A banana?” After that, yes, all I could see was a banana, but it’s really a crescent moon. Maybe I should have used a silver or cream color instead of yellows and bits of orange.

He’s right. It does look like a banana. Oh, well. It was still a quiet, relaxing way to spend Saturday morning, and perhaps I’ll make a habit of this now. Coloring an image is always fun. It’s easy. It’s soothing. It’s a great way to start the weekend, too.

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