Saturday, April 25: Diane Rios

Diane is another versatile artist whose work includes illustration, painting, printmaking, and art from original stencils.  She created today’s piece first with drawing and then with watercolors.
Diane used a photograph she’d taken of a downtown-Portland building as a  reference.  She is inspired by artistic details in architecture and design, especially those with a historical and European flair.  Diane’s skill at illustration was evident as she drew the form and details of the building.  Although her drawing is proportionate and precise, it is not cold and technical.  Diane captured a mood and style in her scene, even before using any color.
After her drawing was complete, Diane used watercolors for color and shading.  It would have been easy to emphasize the volume and heaviness of the building with somber and dark Portland grays, but Diane used light and cheery colors that give her painting a happy sense of surprise.  She used a limited pallette but varied each color to create visual texture of the stone and other materials of the building.
Diane finished her work by darkening the branches in the foreground with a black brush-tip pen, making the branches stand out from the paler colors in the painting to enhance the depth and dimension of her scene.
Especially when working in a short period of time, it is often hard to look at one’s work and know if it is quite finished.  If a piece does seem to need more work, it is not always obvious just what needs to be done to complete it.  Diane still had a sense that she may want to add something to her piece.  She will come back and look at it in a day or two and see what it tells her.  It looks great in the exhibit as it is, but we’ll leave the final decision to the artist!

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