Thursday, February 14, 2008

Mastering the ART of Real Estate

When we first came to Horseshoe Bay, I was completely enchanted with the natural beauty of the development and how well the Hurds & later, the Jaffes, had preserved it. The low water crossings that are so emblematic of the Hill Country are used frequently and I feel like a kid when I drive or walk across them. When a new client cheers as we go through the first time, I grin just as much as they do!

Horseshoe Bay neighborhoods are charming & each has it's own personality, but trying to learn your way around here is NO SMALL TASK. Roads follow the golf course or the lake's shoreline and both meander every which way. My "navigation" system was completely turned around our first few visits here. In order to help my clients decipher the spaghetti we call a road system, I'm working on printing a new map. Kelly Cauble, of is doing it for me & I've decided to use some my original paintings instead of photographs for the artwork. It goes along with my theme of the "Art of Real Estate." It’s also a wonderful way to get to paint & not feel guilty.

I know from teaching art and from working on location, people are intrigued by the process of painting, so I thought I'd post a few pieces as I work on them. These paintings are a combination of media: both watercolor (because it's fast) and colored pencil (for detail). I do a lot of multi-media when I'm on vacation. I usually work small, so they're very portable & I can take a bag with me that's a traveling studio.

The last photo, above, is the starting point. It's a simple pencil drawing & the blue color you see is the masking medium used to "save" the white paper underneath. It's rubbed off when the watercolor is completed. In traditional watercolors, no white paint is used. When you want a lighter color, you add more water to the pigment which makes it more transparent. Pale paint on white paper is how you get highlights in watercolor. To get the color "white" you simply don't paint on that area & let the white of the paper show through. Darker values are achieved by adding more pigment & less water.

The second photo is the "under" painting of watercolor only. By doing all the big blocks of color & establishing the lights and darks I can do a painting of this size (about 6" x 9") in about 3-4 hours. It takes about an hour (and twenty years) to do the watercolor portion.

Photo number one is the finished piece. I've added the colored pencil, which is semi-transparent. Pencil is great for detail and is applied in layers over the watercolor. They're wax based, so you can't add watercolor on top of traditional colored pencils.

The finished piece is called "Sandy Creek Spring.” I used two photos (artistic license) for references that I took last spring in the Trails of LBJ. The vantage point is at the corner of Trails Parkway & Rock 'N Robin, overlooking the Sandy Creek arm of Lake LBJ.

The maps should be completed and ready for mailing in about four to six weeks. Please e-mail or phone if I can send you one. The easiest way to contact me is on my web site. If you'd like to see more of my paintings, go to my art site & to find out more about investing in Horseshoe Bay, check out my REAL ESTATE web site

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