Recently, the Missouri Botanical Garden (or Shaw's Garden, which was what we called it when I was a little girl) hosted a stunning (seriously, STUNNING) lantern festival, celebrating the Chinese culture. Unfortunately, I no longer live in St. Louis (whaaaaaaaaa!!!!!). However, my parents do, and they were nice enough to send me some of the lovely photographs they took, as well as a few postcards. This immediately made me want to kick myself for not bidding on some of those vintage paper lovelies I had been eyeballing on ebay. It also made me immediately want to attempt a couple of watercolors, one of Chinese lanterns, the other of Japanese lanterns. Yep, I have paper lanterns on the brain. (I guess there are worse things, no?)
As you can see, I've become a bit rusty with my watercolor methods...not to mention that crappy watercolor paper, pictured above, was horrible to work with. It warped, rippled (which you can totally see in the scan), and did NOT take color well, AT ALL. Ahh, well. Live and learn. (The paper I used on the drawing above, which sucked with a capital "S", was Canson, cold press, watercolor paper. Never again. Ever.) I did, however, enjoy using the gold/metallic watercolor paint for the fringe. If you would like to try your hand at it, you can purchase a set right here . It's a shame that the metallic sheen of the paint didn't show up in the scan. I guess the next time I use anything pearlescent, I should probably just take a photo, as opposed to scanning it.
The second picture, shown above, was done on my usual "go-to" watercolor paper, Strathmore, cold press. Better texture, colors are brighter, etc. Sigh. Should have stuck with that one in the first place. But, I guess that's how one finds one's favorites, right?
Anyhoo, for those of you that are into lanterns (my Mom said that there was actually one made out of china plates!), please check out the Botanical Garden link I included above. I noticed that they have a "flickr" link included to the right of the page, so I'm sure there are some gorgeous photos of the exhibit. Now...I just need to get working on moving back home to St. Louis.
Hope you all have a fab-u-lous week, and are able to enjoy the chillier temperatures...I LOVE them!