Watercolors by Diane Shabino


Headgear and Hobbies Gallery

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Green Cap with Fishing Lure Four for Wisc. Roads Hard Rock Cap and Sunglasses Michigan Cap with Fishing Lure watercolor still life Wisconsin Cap with Fishing Lure
Green Cap & Fishing Lure Four for Wisconsin Roads Hard Rock Cap & Sunglasses Michigan Cap & Fishing Lure Wisconsin Cap & Fishing Lure

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Headgear & Hobbies are watercolor paintings showcasing still life paintings that I like to think of as pseudo-portraits.   Like the painting 'Four for Wisconsin Roads ' above, which is a self-portrait and portrait of my two sons and husband when we moved back to Wisconsin after twenty years in Michigan.  Each hat or cap and pair of sunglasses is a portrait of one of us.  These paintings are fun for the sports enthusiast and hobbyist as well as possibly having promotional applications for various groups, teams or industries.

I enjoy capturing the personalities of my subjects whether animate or inanimate.  Caps, hats, cars, trucks or just about any subject can be exciting.  These still lifes are often more challenging than just painting the physical likeness of the subject. Imbuing each item with life through color and the vitality of the medium takes the items out of the ordinary.  Since I can only paint what I can see, quality photographs with ample detail are imperative and must reflect the personality, look or mood of the subject as well.  Digital photographs work especially well, as I can enlarge and zoom in to capture details that might not be apparent in a smaller snapshot, though, these are often usable, especially if accompanied with the negative for enlargements.

I create my portrait and still life paintings with transparent watercolor media using high quality Schminke and Winsor & Newton watercolors on d'Arches watercolor papers.  The challenge in rendering with watercolors is to capture the spontaneity of the medium and yet create a realistic representation of the subject. This is even more challenging when you consider that most mistakes can not be changed, scrubbing the paper surface also damages it, creating a dead area, without luminosity.  For transparent watercolors to read well, the paint lays over the white of the paper allowing light to reflect through the paint to the white paper and back, if you damage the paper and the paint is absorbed into the paper, this no longer happens and the scrubbed area will not blend with the rest of the painting.  So mistakes in watercolor are opportunities to learn and start over.  The transparency and luminosity of watercolor is unique and this immediacy sets it apart from other painting and drawing mediums.

Most of my watercolor portrait and still life compositions are very simple because a realistic representation of the subject is my main concern, particularly in the people portraits and the pet portraits as well as the old cars and trucks and other still life subjects. I try to create compelling and interesting compositions that accentuate and enhance the subject though not particularly complex.

All artwork is commissioned for personal use and may not be reproduced without the artist's written permission and all reproduction and copyrights are retained by the artist.

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