A splash of color

On this cold, windy Sunday I would like to share two art projects that are bound to make this day a little more colourful. Every now and then I yearn for an art project where colour is the key. As most of my portraits are in black and white, I sometimes miss colour. A couple of months ago I therefore started a mandala in water colours. I like mandalas not only for the opportunity to experiment with colour, I also like them because they are ‘easy’. They don’t require a good likeness.

The previous mandala I drew was in 2009, and I drew that one with my fantastic Derwent coloured pencils, which I got from my parents as a gift for graduating from my BA (which I did summa cum laude). Whenever I draw mandalas I try to keep them kind of ‘calm’ but instead I always end up with the same organised myriad of coloured, shapes and lines that occupies my head. Nonetheless, I think it turned out quite nicely. It is about 35 cm in diameter, I believe. Here it is:

Mandala 2009

As mentioned, my latest mandala is a water colour. As I explained in a previous blog post, I am a perfectionist and many people consider water colours to be one of the most volatile painting mediums there is. In a way, I agree. But I do manage to make it do exactly what I want most of the time. Even when I’m working wet-in-wet as I did in several areas of this mandala (I think you can probably identify them easily), I usually manage. I also found, and you probably notice this straight away, that in water colours I have a very strong tendency to go for gradient colours. From light to dark red, from yellow to red, from light to dark blue. It gives this mandala a very different vibe than the previous one and possibly makes it even ‘wilder’. This one is slightly bigger, with a diameter of appr. 40 cm. Here it is:

Mandala 2013
So, do you like my mandalas? Do you prefer one to the other? Do you like the coloured pencils or the water colours better? Have you made any mandalas yourself? If so, do share them!

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