When the elements of water, colors, art, and expression join forces, it’s hard not to produce a magical piece of work. Aencille Santos of Aencille Art, a PR professional by day and an avid visual artist almost all her life, shares more about Watercolor Art and how millennials can slowly get their hands on it should they decide to.
Without limits and restrictions
“Watercolor art for me is freedom. The freedom to create a visual without limiting yourself and conforming inside the restrictions of lines and colors. Choose any color, go beyond the lines, and your art still tells your story.”
That is how Aencille sees her craft. Having tried different mediums over the years—oil pastels, colored pens, markers, crayons—she finally decided to give watercolor a try about three years ago. She recalls, “At first, watercolor was an intimidating medium as it's very difficult to control. The color runs very quickly and one wrong move, your piece is ruined… My only regret is that I never tried it sooner. And I fell in love with it ever since.”
She thinks watercolor art would greatly be compatible with “those who wish to express themselves freely through visual art. For the adventurous. For those who look for peace.” It goes without saying though that if you’re someone afraid of making mistakes, then you might easily find yourself frustrated with this medium.
The beauty of balance
“Among the sea of other great artists in the Philippine art industry, it's easy to get your art lost in that ocean,” Aencille shares, “An artist needs to create and maintain his own style, regardless of the trends that come and go.” While she struggles from time to time to stand out and carve her own signature, she has happily found her art style in painting women in an ethereal setting that conveys a certain emotion. She also pairs each painting with poetry or prose from different writers for it to make more sense.
For her, watercolor painting is an ironic combination of keeping her relaxed and stressing herself out. She notes however, for others, it’s a way of self-discovery. She says, “For instance, whenever I'd bring my materials along, my friends would ask for a very quick one-on-one tutorial on it. They surprise themselves because they've accepted the fact that they have no artistic sense in them. When the truth is, everyone can paint!”
Dare to paint
Aencille shares some notes that worked for her that you may also find helpful for when you want to try your hand in watercolor painting:
1. “Buy student-grade materials first. There is no shame in getting affordable student-grade materials as the quality is still excellent. I started with Prang (Watercolor brand) and Canson (Watercolor paper). I'm trying other brands, but I'm still using these until now.”
2. “Watch speed painting videos. The best way to learn is to see how people do it. Having another artist to look up to pushes you to be better at your hobby also.”
3. “Be daring. Don't be afraid to make mistakes. Don't limit yourselves within the outline and go out. Don't be afraid of color. Experiment. Mix and pair contrasting or complimentary colors.”
4. “Share on social media. Sharing is caring! Show the world your new hobby. Your friends and family will support you and your passion.”
5. “Take your time. It takes months of practice to get the hang of it. Each piece is a development of your skill so don't pressure yourself to be really good immediately. Don't be so hard yourself and love what you made!”
Extra tip: “The fulfillment lies in the fact that each time I create a painting, I share a piece of myself to the world. These paintings reflect my feelings and thoughts, whether intentional or not. Each piece tells a story. And each piece is created with a new technique or skill I learned or experimented with.”
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Photographs from Aencille Santos. For more of her watercolor art, follow Aencille here.