Mountain Rigi – Antique Watercolor – Turner Study

antique, antique watercolor, Blue Rigi, landscape, Red Rigi, study, vintage, vintage watercolor, Watercolor, William Turner
Old Masters study
After visiting William Turner’s exhibition in De Young Museum (my previous post Stormy Seascape Vintage Style showed how excited I was to go there); I became even more interested in Old Masters styles and techniques.

I have decided to study several Turner’s paintings with Mount Rigi. My point was to explore the ability of antique, 1894 watercolor paint set, which I have purchased last year for this specific purpose, e.g the study of the Old Masters techniques. 

I loved to challenge myself, and paint without the limits, yet being limited by 19th century pigments and tools. 

In this painting, I combined study of three different Turner’s paintings of this Switzerland mountain: Blue Rigi, Red Rigi, and Dark Rigi. 

I was lucky to see two of the paintings in the De Young Museum. I was standing for probably good twenty minutes exploring inch after inch of the Blue Rigi and the sketch of the Red Rigi, presented there at the exhibition:
antique watercolor

antique watercolor
Turner painted all three paintings in 1842. I have the antique watercolors sets ranging from 1894 through 1952.
The color pallet there is definitely limited, and the pigments are almost hard as the rocks. But, I love them. There was so much of excitement that was coming out or into me (or both) when I touch these paints with my brush. It is hard to explain. It needs to be experience personally 🙂 
The watercolor set (top left) was from 1894 and I mostly used that one to accomplish my painting.
I also looked at the print of the Blue Rigi by Turner, and the illustration in my book British Watercolors, where I found Dark Rigi:
antique watercolor
Somewhere, in the middle of the process, something magic happened. My brush wanted to add some details that were not in Turner’s paintings. 
The tour into the Old Master’s masterpieces allowed me to create my own art piece, full of light, color and fresh mountain air. I felt as if I was there in 19th century; painting this gorgeous Switzerland landscape. 
Wonderful feeling!!

Dutch Still Life With The New Twist

antique, Dutch, Dutch Still Life, Dutch style, Irina, new twist, old still life, Painting, Still Life, style, Watercolor, watercolor pencils
In these several paintings I combined my love to the Dutch Still life style with the exploration of a new medium for me. I am playing these days with watercolor pencils.
I’ve tried several brands and came up to a conclusion, that the same as in watercolor paints, I prefer to work with the high quality watercolor pencils when it comes to this medium.
For now I found two wonderful brands that really work great:  

Albrecht Dürer Watercolor Pencil Tin and Derwent Inktense Pencils

Here are some of them:

And what could be better to try a new twist on Dutch Still life style, when working with new medium.
The Dutch masters  couldn’t even imagine that in the 21st Century one artist would dare to paint their style not only with watercolor, but as well with watercolor pencils, and ink 🙂

Though, they also wouldn’t imaging blogging about it 😉

After drawing with watercolor pencils, touched the artwork the the clear water, and, then added some Winsor&Newton watercolors for the background. When that was completed, and paints dried, I used a black ink to underline each object of the masterpiece.

The first one (above artwork) , Vintage Still Life With Grape And Lemon, contains an old style Dutch Goblet and an antique plate. 

The second one, Vintage Bouquet With Fruits And Butterfly, has numerous flowers in the glass vase, all from the different seasons. Just like in old Dutch Still life the painters didn’t paint flowers bouquets from life. They usually collected sketch-references of each flower all year long; and, then they combined all their “collection” in one gorgeous still life:

Another artwork that I tried with watercolor pencils and ink, Vintage Still Life With Lemon And Berries, has an antique wine glass with juicy berries and a cut lemon, just ready to be served for a nice Summer dinner:

And here is a nice bunch of freshly picked fruits and berries from the 16th Century of a Dutch Still Life painted in our days into a contemporary illustration style. 

I had a feeling that applying an ink into these paintings made them smile, saying “Thank you for remembering us, and giving us a new life!” 

Going Vintage

antique, antique watercolor, Couleurs Sans Danger, James Tissot, Kathleen Newton, Lilian Harvey, Princess Diana, study, Tissot, vintage, vintage art, vintage cards

Lilian Harvey fragment in watercolor
This painting is a careful study of the artwork of James Tissot, Le Banc De Jardin (The Garden Bench), which he painted in 1882. My point of the interest was a little girl in a green dress, Lilian Harvey. This girl is peacefully reclining on a garden bench, leaning on her dear aunt Kathleen Newton. Lilian’s eyes are curious to watch the artist painting. She is resting, but any time she might jump to look at the painting in progress; as one day she will be too painting inspired by the great artist James Tissot…

The exploration of the old masters brought me to a new series, a Vintage Art; but, not only I was curious in the subjects, I also started to explore an old medium. 
I bought a few boxes of antique watercolor paint and started painting. Not an easy task, when you already got spoiled by hundreds of paints’ shades and colors of our modern days.

The antique watercolors more opaque, not so much transparent.Some of the colors (such juicy green or turquoise were missing and I had to work around creating my own mixes). Lots of work, but I definitely enjoyed it. 
Couleurs Sans Danger vintage

The first artwork was an inspiration from old antique greeting cards style. The cute little girl with rosy cheeks was born:

Portrait Of a Girl
I  painted this artwork with the antique French watercolors ,Couleurs Sans Danger. It was quite an experience! 
 Later on, this girl will become a great model for Christmas Cards with nostalgic vintage feeling.

The story of the vintage style exploration was just starting. Something else happened in just a few days after the first vintage painting. 
All of a sudden, my head started creating more and more images from the artworks that I’ve previously painted. And, sure enough, as I have something similar to OCD, which is called OAD (Obsessive Artist Disorder) a dozen of vintage images landed in a new gallery:

I am introducing just a few of them here. In my opinion, those images, create sweet vintage feelings and might trigger good old memories from the viewers:

A peacefully sleeping baby:

antique style art
A sweet memories from the trip to the shore:
Antique art style
Princess Diana portrait in vintage style:
Vintage style artwork
Paris France wall art

The Light Through The Roses

antique, art by Irina, bouquet, floral, Flowers, impressionism, impressionistic, realism, realistic, rose bouquet, roses, Still Life, Watercolor, watercolor cards, watercolor flowers
watercolor still life
In this semi realistic and impressionistic still life painting I wanted to point out the contrast of the light and dark. The sun rays are moving from the window directly to the rose bouquet penetrating the rose petals and leaving a bunch of whimsical shadows and reflections on the antique table.

Red Hat Goes To A Tea Party

antique, bestseller, birthday, celebration, children room, Doll, Flowers, invitation, Irina, kids room, polka dots, red hat, red head, Sztukowski, tea party, vintage, Watercolor
Vintage China Antique Dolly
(prints are available HERE)
This still life was created from several antique objects. The lovely china is from 1921. It was made in Bavaria, then one family from Russia purchased it and later on they brought it to America. The doll is from 50s. I borrowed it from my friend for the still life set. And the quilt on the background is made by my husbands great grandmother long long time ago when they did do each stitch by hand. 
I love the vintage feeling of the sweet coffee cups. It was a challenge though to paint them white-on-white (white cups against a light quilt’s background, but I kept it that way to bring a light to this art work):
orchid teacup
The most fun I had of course when painting polka-dotted Redhead Red Hat Girl. This lady really knew when to come for a tea party. Though she was waiting in the box for half century for that.
Red Hat
I’v even created a few designs with cards to celebrate the Old Times with the sweet messages:
Happy Birthday Celebration
In Every Piece Of My Art There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul