Botanical Impressionism

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watercolor flowers
I am posting some of the festive designs that I recently painted.

I call this style Botanical Impressionism.
Created in the fast manner with the colors right out of the tube simple flower arrangement such the one with Iris Flowers and The Tulip Bunch look great in cooler colors surrounding.

On another hand, warm Poppies and Roses Bouquet are calling for neutral beige colors helping these flowers to “pop-up”:

Watercolor floral designs
The above paintings appear more as botanical art when framed in the vintage style white wooden frames. 
Yet, when printed on a stretch canvas, they start obtaining more Impressionistic qualities. 
Good examples would be these 

watercolor florals 

Hello Hello Summer!

art, Beach Towels, Irina, merchandise, pattern, Portable Battery Charger, Pouches, red poppy, summer, Sztukowski, Tote Bags
Poppies field from Irina Sztukowski
The official date of Summer is just behind the corner; and, right on time, the company I work with decided to create a new exiting merchandise with my art. 

Now, my clients can order Beach Towels, Carry-All Pouches, Weekender Tote Bags, and even Portable Battery Chargers with the pattern of their choice from

What could be better to enjoy the Summer hot days having it with a wide smile and a cute artsy work:
watercolor by Irina Sztukowski

Farewell To The Summer

art business, art career, art studio, artist, floral pattern, illustration, images, Irina Sztukowski, labels, old masters, project, summer, Watercolor
When my friends started asking me this week how was my Summer vacation, I had to admit that I haven’t left the house for more than five days in the raw. 

I asked myself:”Oh, Gosh! What I actually did this Summer?” as it flew by so very quickly.

Besides finishing two large commission pieces.

bicycle basket cats flowers window
sorrento lemon
and wrapping up the Yogurt Labels project with one Irish customer:

This project included sweets like Blueberries and Raspberries, Lemons and Forest Berries, Rhubarb and Vanilla; and, even Caramel Fudge images for yogurt lables. But the most interesting challenge all of them were in the black and white, were placed on different backgrounds in special PNG format of the image. A totally new approach for me as an artist, who mostly painted in watercolor.
So, I guess, instead of going on long vacations, I did take a mini-ones, mostly for the inspiration. 

The Trip To The Woods (my latest post) was a good example of it.

Or, going to San Francisco museums left a good impression and inspired me to  research an Old Masters paintings, such William Turner (the post pretty soon will come up) or Dutch Still Life Masters art
I’ve even painted one seascape following a good traditions of Great Britain masters this Summer:
Old Masters tradition
This Summer was really big for me in understanding better the illustration part of my art business.
I started creating many images with Floral Patterns (ha-ha, Summer really helped to get into the flowery mood :0) 
I also got kinda crazy about ballet and ballerinas silhouettes, which led to the opening a whole new Dance Gallery. I will elaborate on this in one of the upcoming articles. Here is a sneak peek:

Abstract Watercolor

And the last but not least I have added a Baby Room Gallery to my website; that became a quite popular among my customers and art collectors.
Just recently a client from Pinehurst, North Carolina purchased a bulk of cute pillows with my designs:

Wow, my Summer was big, BIG!! No wonder that I didn’t travel much in the last three months 🙂

Instead, my art did. This Summer my artworks prints traveled to the states such CO, NY, FL, AZ, NC, CA, NV, TX, MA, MI, IL, UT, CT. And some of the artworks ended up in  England, Ireland, Kuwait, and Australia. 
I envy my art is traveling more than I do 🙂

But I do have to admit, if I didn’t spend so much time in my studio this Summer, my Summer wouldn’t be so successful!! 

Big virtual hugs to all my Followers and Art Collectors!!

The Field Trip

art by Irina Sztukowski, farm, farmers, field, grass, hunters, realism, summer, trees, Watercolor
watercolor realism
Two men are resting in the field. Who are they? Are they farmers or hunters? Whoever they are we know they are happy on this farm field, a Summer ranch filled with light, grass,and flowers. 
I called this painting Farmers and Hunters Heaven as in spite of hard work these people enjoy their productive day. 

California Landscapes – Point Arena Lighthouse

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California Landscape

When painting this gorgeous landscape I had to practically “built”
the rocks layer by layer. It took me a couple of hours to achieve the texture
of the rocky cliff with its washes, cracks, grass, and clays. I was doing it
patiently with passion, thinking that Mother Nature did the same her way but it
took a few million years :0)
Here are a few interesting facts:
The Point Arena Lighthouse is situated on the closest point
of land to the Hawaiian Islands in the Continental United States. The point is
surrounded on three sides by the Pacific Ocean which keeps the area cool. This Lighthouse
is set in one of the most spectacular and peaceful surroundings on the northern
California coast. The Point Arena tower is the only Pacific West coast
lighthouse of significant height that you can climb to the top! Access to the
lantern room provides a panoramic view of the rugged California coast and of
the ocean.
A Little bit of history:
The first lighthouse at this site was constructed in 1870.
The brick-and-mortar tower included ornate iron balcony supports and a large
Keeper residence with enough space to house several families. In April 1906, a
devastating earthquake struck the Light Station. The Keeper’s residence and
Lighthouse were damaged so severely that they had to be demolished.
The new lighthouse began operation in 1908, nearly 18 months
after the quake. It stands 115 feet (35 m) tall, and featured a 1st Order
Fresnel Lens, over six feet in diameter and weighing more than six tons. The
lens was made up of 666 hand-ground glass prisms all focused toward three sets
of double bullseyes. It was these bullseyes that gave the Point Arena
Lighthouse its unique “light signature” of two flashes every six
seconds. This incredible optic, that held an appraised value of over $3.5
million, was set in solid brass framework, and was built in France. Prior to
the introduction of electricity, the lens was rotated by a clockwork mechanism.
The Keepers, or “wickies” as they were called, had to hand crank a
160-pound weight up the center shaft of the lighthouse every 75 minutes to keep
the lens turning. Light was produced by a “Funks” hydraulic oil lamp,
that needed to be refueled every four hours, and whose wicks would have to be
trimmed regularly. Later, two 1,000 watt electric lamps were installed to
replace the oil lamp, and a 1⁄8 horsepower electric motor was installed to replace
the clockworks.
Nowadays (since 1984) nonprofit organization called the
Point Arena Lighthouse Keepers takes care of this place providing diligent
historic preservation of this beautiful place.
(info:courtesy to wiki and 

Watercolor Rose Painting

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pink roses
I am celebrating a Rose Petals Day today. And even though I found out that an official Rose Day is somewhere in February, on my blog it is here and now :0)..

Why do I love roses? I think for their multiple generous petals, which at the first glance are looking alike yet not the same. Each petal is unique when, after all, unites into a gorgeous flower. 

Why else? Hm…I also like these flowers for the challenge. When the artist paints a rose, she has to put herself in some meditation stage, painting one petal after another.. and, again, never forget about stepping away and see the whole flower. 

When painting this rose, I almost got lost in the petals, in their beauty, and their abstracted realism.

Just take a look at the fragments of the same rose, isn’t it a lovely abstract suggested in the turn of petals?


petal study
Celebrate a Rose Day with me. I pulled all my recent roses and combined them in a PhotoShop “bouquet” for you :0)
rose garden
Original painting Rose (above all) is Watercolor on 20″x16″ 300lb Cold Pressed Paper

In Every Piece Of My Art There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul

Watercolor Poppies – Bay Area Flowers Series

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red yellow pink poppy
Poppies field is an inspiration after visiting Blake Garden in Berkeley hills. The variety of flowers there is amazing: red, yellow, pink poppies; a beautiful quilt made by Mother Nature (with the help of people of course :0). 
The original painting Poppies is 27″x21″ Watercolor on Hot Pressed 140lb Arches paper

In Every Piece Of My Art There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul

California Beach – Plein-Air – Art Festival in Capitola

beach, California, Capitola Art Festival, chairs, Irina, ocean, realism in watercolor, sailboats, Santa Cruz, seascape, summer, Sztukowski, umbrellas, vacation
Detailed Image is HERE

Detailed Image is HERE
My artist friend Vera Lysenko invited me to visit an Art & Wine Festival in Capitola, CA last weekend. Bright sunny day with all the art and happy people around was great for a plein-air painting.  Making art outside in front of hundreds of people is quite different from painting in the studio or in some quiet place in the park. And even though I’ve heard a lot of compliments, I had to abstract my mind from what’s going on around focusing only on the subject of the painting. The funny part that I got so lost in my mind that I forgot to use the sunscreen sitting under the Sun for more than 4 hours.Go figure: my chest now looks like that little girl’s dress :0) oh well.. we have saying in Russia: The Beauty Demands Some Sacrifice ;0) 
Original Paintings:
California Beach – 10″x14″ Watercolor on 300lb Cold Pressed paper
Two Chairs on The Beach — 9″x12″ Watercolor on 140lb Cold Pressed paper
In Every Piece Of My Art
There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul

Apricot Trio

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For Detailed Image Click Here
For Detailed Image Click Here
I usually start painting with the background; but this time I started with the main subject. First, I’ve painted the apricot branch and then filled the back area with the garden. I took pictures of both; and, it s hard to tell which version is better. The apricot painting with the white background looks more as a botanical study, isn’t it.. The top one with the apricots in the garden looks more as the Summer Landscape with the branch fragment where the artists, during a nice walk in the garden, looked up and saw a beautiful trio hanging on the tree and posing for a painting :0)
The apricots with the white background have more story to tell, but I will reveal it in a couple of weeks or so. Stay tuned :0)
In Every Piece Of My Art
There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul

Berkeley – Blake Garden – Plein Air

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Original is SOLD
Participating Artists Artworks
Yesterday I participated in Plein Air painting with my colleges from CWA (California Watercolor Association). We found an absolutely amazing place, Blake Garden in Berkeley, where every inch is asking to be painted: the trees, the pond, San Francisco Bay view, Berkeley hills, and stunning flower garden. I decided to paint an entry into the Flower Garden as the shadows and morning light were just right for a cozy painting. The hours passed by so quickly that I have not noticed it was time for a final critique. All artists chose their favorite places to paint and the artworks were absolutely beautiful.
12″x16″ Saint-Petersburg White Nights Watercolor on 300lb Arches Cold Pressed Paper
More Plein-air paintings are HERE

In Every Piece Of My Art
There Is A Piece Of My Heart And A Sparkle Of My Soul