I am Nora MacPhail, a professional artist from Toronto, Canada (follow me on my Blog, Facebook, and Flickr!). I have been drawing and painting with watercolour for over 20 years. I try to achieve a strong energetic line, by drawing very quickly with a dark instrument, then I add lots of watercolour paint.
I prefer 6B pencils or Micron artist quality pens to start, always drawing first, then I add lots of colour spots, pretty much ignoring the lines I just drew! I want my work to look fresh and poetic, but still realistic. My favourite subject is capturing people in cafes or outdoor patios, enjoying their day and friendly conversation.
I draw from life at figure drawing sessions every week. Drawing from the human figure, usually with charcoal, is a fantastic way to learn to see and draw well. All the shapes are there for me to learn from. Sometimes, I bring some watercolour paint with me for the longer poses, like 20 minutes, because I just can’t resist adding a wash and some splatters.
I also paint still life set ups from my home studio, usually including flowers (as shown above). Flowers are quite abstract and they present a constant colourful challenge.
Finally, I draw and paint from my paint box while outdoors, often urban sketching with the Toronto Urban Sketchers. It’s wonderful to go out plein-air painting. Here is a picture of a 9×12”box that sits on my lap, with a 6×8”pad in the lid and my Winsor & Newton Cotman Travel Watercolour Palette inside. It’s lighter and much more portable than an easel set up, which makes me more apt to bring it along wherever I go!
As you can see, all subjects interest me! My paintings are original and affordable and available for purchase at my etsy shop called Watercolours by Nora.
Thanks and Enjoy your summer!!
Creator of Doodlewash® and founder of World Watercolor Month™ (July) and World Watercolor Group™. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!