This morning I pulled up a photo of boats at anchor in the San Juan Islands, put on a music CD, and prepared to paint. Using a large flat brush, I quickly brushed in a dark background around the shapes, then pulled down reflections. Next came the horizontal lines, representing the water. Lastly I painted the small shapes on the boats, using a small round brush. Colors: ultramarine and cerulean blues, raw sienna and burnt sienna, and quinacridone red.

Today, I stopped and let the painting dry while it still felt a little “underdone,” instead of continuing to add more brush marks. Sometimes you just have to stop painting even though you are enjoying the process. Sometimes more paint is not the answer. Also helpful this morning:¬† ¬†Little Richard’s rapid-fire “Tutti Frutti” playing in the background helped me paint fast and finish early, saving the freshness of the piece. The choice of quinacridone red added some brightness and energy to the work as well.