Not Happy About This

Holidays are over. The family has all gone home. Tomorrow is the last Caturday of the year. Mr Prince is not happy about his party hat.

Last Caturday 2106 -watercolor and gouache 8" x 8" by Serena Fenton
Last Caturday 2106 -watercolor and gouache 8″ x 8″

What’s That?

Last week, my darling daughter reflected on the passive nature of my cat paintings. Well, cats do sleep something like 22 hours a day. But that might not be a good enough defense.
Poking through Pinterest, I was inspired by the Blockheads series by ceramicist Jennifer Bernhard Hatfield. This is what happens when a Blockhead stalks a cat.

After Thanksgiving Comes Santa Cat

Santa Cat came to visit today as I was trying to get back into the swing of things after Thanksgiving.  watercolor and gouache.

And time spent wondering why gouache turns so muddy when blending ‘primaries’.  Could be a sure sign that my ‘starter’ kit was just that: a starter.  I should probably toss the remainder and upgrade to a full set of the luscious paints by M Graham  Wonder if Santa Cat might drop something beneath the tree?  Hmmmmm

Santa Cat #1 - watercolor and gouache by Serena Fenton
Santa Cat #1 – watercolor and gouache

Crookshanks – a Portrait

While I am off at the movies, Crookshanks is keeping an eye out for Fantastic Beasts. Crookshanks’ portrait was this week’s #colour_collective  challenge, with sea blue wallpaper.

Crookshanks, watercolor, gouache and watercolor pencil 8"x 8"  by Serena Fenton
Crookshanks, watercolor, gouache and watercolor pencil 8″x 8″

Blue-Eyed Baby (Circus Cat #6)

As I’m working on this cat series, I’ve been viewing cat photos from the local animal shelters, which is a dangerous pastime.   There are so many beautiful cats out there, needing good homes.  But I am resisting visiting them and adopting them Painting only!

Circus Cat #6 - Blue Eyed Baby - Gouache on paper; 8" x 8"  by Serena Fenton
Circus Cat #6 – Blue Eyed Baby – Gouache on paper; 8″ x 8″ by

Golden Circus Cat

It’s Caturday just a little early, and I’m continuing my circus cat series.  Here’s #5. The background was selected for this week’s #colour_collective challenge, in brilliant gold; gouache and watercolor.

The gold watercolor from a jar of old, now discontinued, watercolor pigment that was made by Daniel Smith.  Sadly, they appear to no longer sell the pigments or the metallic dry powder.  I will have to use the remaining 18 grams wisely – of find a new source.

Circus Cat # 5 - Gouache and watercolor; 8" x 8" by Serena Fenton
Circus Cat # 5 – Gouache and watercolor; 8″ x 8″

What Happened??

Taking a break from my ongoing circus theme, just to ponder the last few days and what happened in this election.  Days like this definitely make you think.

What Happened? Gouache painting by Serena Fenton 8" x 8"
What Happened? Gouache painting – 8″ x 8″

Circus Cat # 3

With a background color chosen for the  #colour_collective challenge, using #moroccanblue, this is my third in the circus cat series.

The cat is watercolor.  I was asked on the previous cat painting how I got the fur strokes.  Those are done with a rigger (or liner) brush. There’s a bit of ink around the eyes and the nice flat background is done with gouache.

Circus Cat #3 - watercolor, ink and gouache 8"x8" by Serena Fenton
Circus Cat #3 – watercolor, ink and gouache 8″x8″

Dense Foliage and Wildlife

Summer in the South means that everything is green and thriving.  I grew up on the desert, dodging tumbleweeds and squinting into the glare.  The richness and color of a Southern summer just amazes me.

Southern Summer - gouache painting by Serena Fenton
Southern Summer – gouache painting by Serena Fenton

Here’s Looking at You, Kid

Bluebird fantasy landscape.  This is what happens when you watch your bird feeders for too long..  The birds are no longer worried about me.  They just watch right back.

Looking at You - gouache painting by Serena Fenton
Looking at You – gouache painting, 4″x 4″

Charleston Groundcover

In the spring, it seems that everything in Charleston, South Carolina is in bloom.  The magnolia and jasmine make the air sultry sweet.  Color is bursting our everywhere.  This painting was inspired by a tiny patch of garden that was past its prime – there’s a tulip stem, but no flower.  Yet it was a splash of color.

Groundcover - gouache painting by Serena Fenton
Groundcover – gouache painting by Serena Fenton

Floral Arrangement

This was done a couple weeks ago and was one of my first experiments in using gouache on a toned drawing paper instead of white watercolor paper.  The smoothness of the page is great for gouache.  Since this was just after Mother’s Day (and I have a sweet family), a fanciful bouquet was the perfect painting inspiration.

The Arrangement - gouache painting by Serena Fenton
The Arrangement – gouache painting by Serena Fenton

Bluebirds

For the second year in a row, we have bluebirds nesting in a house attached to the outside of our screened deck.  They are great birds to watch, particularly the way their color changes in the sunlight.

Bluebird - gouache painting by Serena Fenton
Bluebird – gouache painting

Dandelions

Dandelions can be weeds or gorgeous, amazing flowers.  Your viewpoint depends mostly on how your lawn.  My lawn is so shady that even dandelions don’t stand a chance.  I’ve grown over the years to have a deep affection for them.

Gouache painting: 8″ x 8″

Dandelions - gouache painting by Serena Fenton
Dandelions – gouache painting

Kingfisher in the Rain

Well, it’s not actually raining in the painting, but it has been raining here for 5 days straight, which is odd since I am neither in Seattle nor London.  The good news is that I have gotten a lot of painting done while being stuck inside.  This is the first of a series of 8″ x 8″ paintings in gouache.

Kingfisher - gouache painting by Serena Fenton
Kingfisher – gouache painting

Tropical Fantasy

Life just gets busy.  I have been working on a new series of paintings this past month.  All of them are watercolor birds with gouache patterned backgrounds.

Tropical Fantasy - watercolor and gouache painting by Serena Fenton
Tropical Fantasy – watercolor and gouache painting

Gouache is not the easiest medium to take up.  Trying to blend gouache tends to give chalky, stiff messes.  But I am finding that I am enjoying creating bold patterened backgrounds, which are in contrast to the more realistic bid paintings.  This bird is a bit of a fantasy.  I started out with a flicker and then just went astray with hte colored feathers.