Just got back from a hike through the hilly terrain around the area. The views are stunning and I'll definitely bring my painting gear next time I hike it. I also took some more floral shots from around the streets of Giverny.
We went inside the local church and I saw Monet's family grave outside the church. It's beautiful, but I don't feel right taking photos of them.
My First Morning in Giverny
I just received a set of Schmincke Horadam watercolors, which is an early Christmas present to myself. The set includes 12 colors (5ml tubes) in a solidly built folding palette. I'm always trying out various brands and have found that I like the semi-moist quality of M. Graham & Co. and Sennelier; these two brands are honey-based and allow easy rewetting of the colors. Schmincke is not honey based, but does have similar properties to the brands I prefer. I'm not too picky about the brands I use (I also enjoy Winsor & Newton), but I find Daniel Smith's watercolors to be too difficult to rewet once they're dry.
This set by Schmincke has a full range of colors and each is vivid and lays very nicely on the paper. I was particularly impressed with the ivory black because it laid down really dark and didn't lighten too much as it dried. I know some artists don't use blacks and browns in watercolor, but I find black to be quite useful. Another nice touch is the inclusion of a color chart so you can see the colors in all their glory.
I don't quite know how to explain the fact that these tubes and colors also feel nice. As a painter, I usually follow my instincts and have a more intuitive approach so my feelings are very important to me. As I also mentioned, I like colors that rewet easily and this set does this extremely well. I would definitely recommend this set and this brand to other watercolorists who want bright, vivid pigments that rewet easily. Well done Germany!
Fall Colors at Valleau
Had a great day painting this beautiful scene. I even met another painter who was walking by. I'm going to try and get out a few more times before all the leaves are gone!