I had been learning how to paint with watercolor! Since I was joined by my friend Lito Ballaran, a respected watercolorist, to the then International Watercolor Society of the Philippines (IWSP), I had been seriously trying to learn the art of watercolor. My biggest difficulty in learning the craft is my penchant for oil which I believe, I had developed my own style I call “Transparent Cubism” but even that, I think is being lost as I paint. Nevertheless, a teacher once told us that if one has to paint with any medium, one has to use the said medium to its full potential – that one should show the characteristics of the medium. Basically, watercolor being transparent and the others, opaque.
What I notice with watercolor is that there seems to be an accepted way one has to deal with it. This reminds me of exhibits and art competitions which have to undergo a jury of ones peers. This jury of masters dictate the aesthetics of what a good watercolor painting should be. To me, this standardization of the medium, especially in competitions disallows watercolor to grow. This is also the reason why I do not approve of the proposed leveling from beginners to masters of the practitioners. There should be other ways the medium can be used if only we could open our minds and let the practitioners explore other possibilities. I admire my classmate and friend, Buds Convocar,who has developed a different way of using the medium which to my mind, is very successful. This is how I want watercolor to be if only I could. Otherwise, let us continue to be among the herd, each one a repetition of the other.
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