Picking up that paintbrush and deciding that, not only would I tell this story, but also that I would finally learn to paint with watercolor paints, was the start of this fantastic odyssey. I fell in love with watercolor paints. At least for me, as someone who didn't give this medium a chance until so much later in life, I love the way I am always on the edge of control with the water and the paint. Sometimes it does things I didn't set out to do. But the fun thing about it is that these unexpected things are usually so beautiful and organic that I find a way to adapt the rest of the painting to it. This is how I started doing the animal series with the whimsical and whispy backgrounds. I often end up having so much fun and spending so much more time on the background than the main subject. But not really. Every painting, I am still learning, and hoping I get better and better.
The paintings will usually be my best effort to illustrate an animal in all its beauty, if not its perfection. To enhance some aspect of it which catches my eye: a gesture, the glimmer of an eye, an ear... and then place it in a fantastical world. But perhaps not so much so. After all, animals see things differently than we do. Perhaps that's what a sky would look like to them as the sun sets. Who really knows?
Then I also paint imaginary creatures, but then these will be in or by a natural environment as possible. These creatures were an idea of mine for a future picture book. And attempt to get children interested in exploring their world. I remember being a child, so curious, looking at tiny flowers and tiny holes in a tree trunk and being convinced that it was entirely possible that tiny and adorable little creatures existed. As long as that gets a child to spend time outside, this works for me!
Lastly, every once in a while I indulge my purely adult side and create digital paintings of one of my favorite animals: the octopus.