watercolor by Alison Nicholls

What Do You See?

what do you see

Turning the painting around to view all angles.

‘What do you see’ is the question I ask myself when I’ve painted watercolor washes but haven’t decided what the subject of my painting will be.

Why would I want to start a painting without knowing what the subject is?
Some days I need to just get in the studio and paint, without spending hours planning my painting. I’m a great planner and love to have everything under control, but too much planning also saps my energy. Some days I know I’ll be more productive if I just start mixing color and laying down washes. So that’s what I do.

Once the washes are dry, I start asking myself ‘what do you see’. I turn the painting around, looking at it from all 4 sides, until something jumps out at me. In this case, what jumped out at me was the possibility of the left-hand side of the painting becoming a huge tree trunk. But that may change. We will see!


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