Crusade No 52 – seasonal wardrobe

Over at the GPP Street Team Michelle’s asking if the change of seasons brings a change of colour palette. My initial thought was no – my colours are what the are. There is something that changes with the seasons, and that’s the size I work at. But then, as I looked for examples of the size thing, I started to notice that there are changes in my colour palette – subtle, but the changes are certainly there. By the way, we’re just about at the shortest day and so far it’s been a winter with record temperatures; records highs, that is. Today is overcast and about 17 (63) degrees. A socks and t-shirt day, not a boots and cardigan day.

Why does the size I at work at change with the seasons? Practicality. My art room is in the old caravan shed; it’s unlined, with a concrete floor on dirt, and uninsulated corrugated iron walls. In a world – cold! To get to it I have to dash outside in the pouring rain, only a short distance but thoroughly unpleasant on a bad day. For most of the year I work BIG in the art room, flinging paint round and being messy. Then, for the coldest wettest months of the year I work on the desk in my inside office that I use for studying and to run our small business. This means working smaller, and working neater. I try hard not to fling paint up the walls (but haven’t always succeeded).

Looking at the images in my files, I can see that I use more warm and even hot colours in winter when I am working smaller. The big works are often quite cool blues and greens. It’s not something I had been conscious of before. Thanks for opening my eyes to it Michelle. Below are some poppie paintings; the full size sheets of watercolour were done in summer but the 10″ square poppies were done this morning. The large blue one was also a summer paintings but the small red painting was a winter one.

The earth shook last night - 4x8"

Working the Freezing Works XI - 40x60"

Poppies - 10x10"

Poppies - full size sheet of watercolour paper

19 thoughts on “Crusade No 52 – seasonal wardrobe

  1. Beautiful work Cath! Fun to revisit with the Observation Glasses on. Love hearing your account of the working space – I have a similar winter situation with minimal heat and tend to work differently. Love hearing that you change your size depending on the season simply because of space. You handle both scales very well – not everyone and transition so easily. Interesting that you noticed a color change -thanks for contributing to the conversation and sharing your thoughts and work with the team!


  2. What a “cool” discovery Cath! I love your reds and turquoise. That the small “hot” one is completely opposite than the big “cold” ones.

    The fields are full of poppies here at the moment, it had me thinking of you! Best wishes from germany, tj


  3. Wow, I love your paintings! Both of the poppies ones are my favorites. There’s something so fabulous about poppies. And the backgrounds you set them against are wonderful.
    Thanks for showing what you found out about yourself for the crusade. Isn’t it cool how subtle the changes can be in our work?


  4. Love that red popping from the canvas – so summery. I have not discovered a change in colours with the change of the seasons, but I do see that I start to work with different mediums and get loads of inspiration. All that light and sun is bringing out the best in me.


  5. I love how Michelle’s simple challenge gets us to think deeper about what we often take for granted.
    Love your samples with your work and the story behind your big & small work. I often feel restrained by my space & should take advantage of the warm weather to go outside and get messy. It’s summer!
    Your poppies are so cool.


  6. Your work is incredible! I can see why you work smaller in winter. When I am very cold I seem to loose my muse.
    I love your poppies so much expecially the contrast between the blue/aqua and red – very striking.


  7. I just love the poppies and it was so interesting reading about your workspace. I can imagine it with your description. How interesting that you made the discovery re size and colour on reflection. Sounds like you have fun in that special space.


  8. Love the poppies, Cath. It’s so interesting the way we change color, size or how/where we work based on the seasons. It took me a long time to realize that I changed color seasonally.


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