Why not….Learn to Paint With Watercolor

Have I ever shared the story about my high school art class?  Lets just say, that thanks to  one high school teacher I was taught that while I may have a creative mind, my vision doesn’t always make it to the paper when it comes to art.  In 2018 I am making it my mission to learn to paint with watercolor and finally put to rest the complex Mrs. S left me all those year ago!

Learn to Paint with Watercolors

When I finally made it to high school I was excited about getting to pick elective classes in subjects that interested us.  If I remember correctly in grade 9 art was mandatory.  It was your typical art class where we learned everything from pen and ink to watercolor, pottery and even stained glass.  

I have absolutely no idea why, but the art teacher Mrs. S did not seem to care for me very much.  We never had a run in.  I was a quiet student and never got into any trouble.  Yet she always found reason to criticize my projects.  Always in front of the entire class.  And, every single project I handed it came back with a grade of 62 out of 100.  Every. Single. One.

Learn to paint with watercolors

Despite being uncomfortable around her, I continued to take art in grade 10 and grade 11.  And every year, every project got a grade of 62 out of 100.  In grade 11, when we were learning to draw caricatures and cartoons I decided I had had enough and asked my father to draw mine for me.  He really had a knack for drawing caricatures, and his drawings always turned out great.  Let’s just say he was not amused when I brought home his my submission with a mark of, you guessed it, 62 out of 100!

learn to paint with watercolor

I couldn’t put myself through another year trying so hard only to be shot down time and time again.  I switched my art credit to television media arts for my last year of high school.  

I still try and tap into my creative side with projects like this or this, but all these years the thought of trying my hand at art classes again has been on my mind.

When I came across Jeanne Oliver’s online art classes I took a look around and made a mental note that some day I would take a class.

learn to paint with watercolor

This past November I decided it was time.  I signed up for Water Colors and Flowers, An Introduction to Watercolor Painting.  An online class made up of a series of videos that comes with lifetime access and allows me to work at my own pace.  The best part, it only cost $18 which means if I really am that bad I am not out a lot of money!

I bought a set of watercolor paints, some brushes and watercolor paper and promptly put it all away in my closet.  Self doubt started creeping in and I didn’t want to open anything in case I decided to take it back.

Last week I finally got started on my journey to learn to paint with watercolors and I have to tell you although I have barely scratched the surface I am thoroughly enjoying it.  Maybe it is because I am at that age, where I really don’t care what others think, but I actually posted my first real “painting” of a lemon on Instagram for all the world to see(or at least the 300 or so people Instagram chooses to show it to)!

Learn to Paint with Watercolor

Learn to Paint with Watercolor

All those years with Mrs. S. looking over my shoulder in art class just waiting to jump in a derogatory comment about my work, I just tried to remember that art, or at least being creative, made me happy, and that some day I would get it right.

Learn to paint with watercolor

Well, it’s time to turn this lemon into lemonade! I have a lot to learn and a loooong way to go, but I am finally confident that regardless of the outcome I sure am going to enjoy the journey!

So I ask you….Why not learn to paint with watercolor?

Until next time…..

Red Cottage Chronicles




PS: This is not a sponsored post and I am sure Jeanne Oliver has no idea how happy I am to have found this class, but I wanted to make it easy for you to find her classes if you decide to explore your artsy side so I included a link!

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  1. Hi,
    Is anyone else having a hard time getting to the VIP PRINTABLES ??
    I’ve tried entering the password many times…
    I appreciate any help & advise

  2. I love learning and especially creative. How fun~ I have tons of water colors and have to say one year for Christmas one of my kids gave me a paint everyday calendar. It was my favorite gift. When I read your title my heart leaped and my mind came in and said “because you don’t have time, that’s why not”…my heart usually wins those arguments.

  3. Maureen, I loved your story. How an Art Teacher could be so consistently critical with an eternal score of 62 baffles the mind. I’m glad you persisted at doing something that obviously interests you. I say go for it with your whole heart! I’ve always loved the look of watercolors. Me, I have no interest in painting, and know I have no aptitude for it, but I’ve always wanted to learn to play the piano. What stops me is not having anywhere to put a piano, and not wanting to pay the money for one. That IS a big expense if I don’t like it.

  4. Good for you for picking it back up again. That teacher needed to retire since she seemed to lose her motivation to teach and inspire. I can’t wait to see what you create, your lemon already looks great!

  5. I have often wondered about online painting classes. I have been wanting to take painting classes (acrylic) for years and could never find any near where I live. I wondered if online would work. If I could do it without someone there for me to ask questions of… I’ll be interested to see what you think.
    🙂 gwingal