Painting Happiness with Watercolours – Unlock your creativity and discover the joy of watercolour painting!
As soon as I saw the front cover of this book, I was keen to discover more about watercolours.
I don’t have much experience with this technique as my preference is mediums that I have more control over. However, this simple, vibrant guide quickly taught me the art of watercolour through mindfulness, providing inspiration, practical advice, and step-by-step projects for all abilities.
The creator of this book, Terry Runyan’s approach is fresh and empowering, she encourages you to explore, experiment and play with art. She is honest and personal and invites you into her own life journey with her anxiety and insecurities regarding her creative ability. I could personally relate to this and sure many other readers could too.
I found the book very inspirational and uplifting, full of happy and colourful imagery and a gentle reminder that art and creativity are everywhere and in everything. She encourages you that you can’t go wrong with art and really takes the stress and guilt off whether you feel inspired or not.
As a perfectionist of my own art, working through the book was a refreshing way to look at art again. It takes the pressure away from thinking that every piece of art I produce must mean something and that it must be a masterpiece. This book allows you to connect with your inner child and quietens down the self-critical adult mind. “Moving forward without expectation allows for the curiosity which replaces the fear of the unknown, and we start to enjoy the mystery”.
Painting Happiness includes very helpful background information about types of watercolours and their uses, recommendations of supplies and mediums to use when painting with watercolours e.g., types of round brushes, palettes, paper etc and is something I will keep handy so I can go back to it whenever I feel unmotivated or recognise my inner-critic voice getting louder. It is the perfect guidebook that tells me all the things I need to hear to get me back in the present moment with my creativity.
Projects to try at home include a 30-day creative kick-starter, characters and faces, flower fun, and cats on heads inspired by Terry’s popular #catonheadwednesday creations all of which I found exciting and easy to follow.
I love the way that Terry encourages you to loosen up by starting with just messing around on a piece of paper and just going for it. She also includes prompt lists which I found to be very helpful as sometimes my mind goes blank! As the projects go on, the more you learn about experimentation and all the layers that make a beautiful piece of art. Another tip I found to be helpful was Terry reminding you to step away and come back with fresh eyes.
This book I would recommend to anyone who wants to explore mindfulness in a unique way.