#28 Make a Painting

I’m coming down to the wire on my 28 by 29 list. I only have 3 weeks left to finish it! I’m not going to make it, but I think I’ve put a good dent in it. Today I did #28—make a painting.

For some reason my paintings never end up being the style I gravitate toward. I think I prefer things to be a bit more abstract and stylized. I feel like I’ve found my groove with pen and ink, but not so with painting. While painting I tense up, and I don’t have fun with it like I do when I’m doodling in my sketchbook. I think I’m subconsciously afraid to mess up and waste my nice thick paper and paints. I need to loosen up and play!

Lately I’ve been keeping my gouache stuff in this awesome owl cookie jar.

gouache landscape painting

I really like the simplicity of the lupines before I added more detail. Undo button please?

gouache landscape painting

It was hard not to drink my paint water. It looked like liquified cotton candy.

gouache landscape painting

gouache landscape painting

I like the palette better than the painting! It’s so spontaneous and loose.

gouache landscape painting

(Painting inspired by this photo I took at Lake Tekapo, NZ)

New Zealand Vacation Photos


  1. Hannah Alyse

    I am in love with this painting! Did you ever read Miss Rumphius?! The whole book is about her and these flowers. It was my absolute favorite book ever as a kid and this is like a picture straight out of the book. Seriously, look at the cover to see what I mean. Its awesome and so is your painting :)

    1. Amanda (wit & whistle) Post author

      No, but I want to! Several people have mentioned it to me recently. I really need to get a copy.

  2. Melissa

    I love it! I would certainly buy a print of this. It’s too bad you’re not happier with how it turned out.

    And yes, the cookie jar is wonderful. West Elm has enabled my lifelong urge to be a crazy owl lady.

    1. Amanda (wit & whistle) Post author

      I do like it a bit better now that I’m looking at it again a day later. Maybe I stared at it for too long yesterday, hah!

  3. kate

    I think your painting came out great!
    Have you ever worked with watercolor pencils? You can have your neat, tidy lines where you want them, but just running a damp brush over the areas where you’d prefer a more painterly look does the trick!

    1. Amanda (wit & whistle) Post author

      I tried them briefly once, but I had cheap ones that didn’t do much when you added water. Maybe I should get a brand name set to try out!

  4. Laura | Paper & Honey

    how funny that you have a post involving gouache – yesterday I was trying to figure out what brand other artists prefer! that is Winsor & Newton, correct? would you recommend it?

    I love, love, looove the photo of the palette. I would buy that print. it would be interesting if you created a painting of that photo!

    1. Amanda (wit & whistle) Post author

      Yes! I really like Winsor & Newton gouache. I tried cheaper brands before and the consistency and color were way off. Next time I’ll have to use a piece of paper for a palette. Then I’ll end up with two paintings instead of one! ;)

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