Morning in the garden

I’ve been thinking a lot about Charles Reid this week. The renowned watercolour painter and teacher died last Saturday, and although I was never fortunate enough to study with him, my library has a whole shelf of his books. I look at them often, and sometimes reading just one page of any of them will fill my head with enough painting ideas for a week.

One of my most dog-eared of his books is Painting What You Want to See. Here’s a little quote from the intro, “At the core of this book is the idea that we’re not painting “things” in terms of objects, rather we’re painting things as patches of color and value”. That simple yet very important concept was top of mind as I sketched in my garden this morning.

30 Comments on “Morning in the garden”

  1. Carol says:

    so sad to hear of his passing. His watercolor books were the first I had.


  2. TonyU says:

    Lovely words ….. from him and from you.


  3. Jeff Gold says:

    And what a beautiful tribute to his memory. “painting things as patches of color and value” could easily be your motto as well. But there’s so much more. As always your simplification of the subject and concentration on a particular area of interest are stunningly successful here.The contrast of greens and reds and those striking shadows just pop off the page. Wow!


  4. Judy Sopher says:

    Lovely painting. I also have his books. Goes back to when I started collecting art books. Sad to lose someone of his talent.


  5. Uma Maheswar Nakka says:

    All his watercolor painting are amazing.
    Very sad to know that this great artist and teacher is no more with us.
    A week back he is with us and now he is not there forever.
    But immortal in our Hearts with his wonderful art.
    May his soul rest in peace.
    I pray his family and friends have enough strength to bear his loss.



  6. elaine says:

    Thank you for sharing ~ what a loss. I hope to obtain his books.


  7. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    I am not familiar with this artist. I am sure I would appreciate his books. I also appreciate your sketch. Love those colors and especially your loosey goosey way of painting. I would love to be able to loosen up.


  8. Gina says:

    Charles Reid’s books and videos contained a wealth of inspiration and wisdom. He was very generous, as are you, Shari, in sharing and teaching. He, and you, will always have an influence on how I paint. Thank you.


    • Gina, thanks for reminding me about his videos. I forgot that I have watched some of them. He has a very unique way of putting paint on the paper, doesn’t he? He just tries to get it right the first time without painting in layers. I admire him so much for that.


  9. What a valuable quote to reflect on. Your painting is sumptuous. So evocative of this wonderful time of year..


  10. Denise says:

    Spending the day painting was a nice tribute to a great artist. I’m glad I had the opportunity to paint with you, another great artist!


  11. Marion says:

    Thank you for sharing Shari. I would like to add that the objects/things that we like to paint are not only patches of colour and tone but also a visual expression of the emotions that we experience in studying the subjects as well as the character that we imbue into the scene.


  12. I was sadden to hear he had passed. I have one his videos and a number of his books. Your painting is a wonderful tribute. Charles Reid was a master of contour drawing.


    • He sure is a master of contour drawing. Each and every time I put a pencil on watercolour paper, I think of the way I learned to draw from following his method. He really makes you aware of edges.


  13. Bob Cosgrove says:

    So sad to learn of Charles Reid’s death. I took a workshop with him about ten years back and was fortunate enough to purchase one of his demo paintings, which hangs in my home. Some of his work is just astonishing. I’m sorry I’ll never have the pleasure of studying with him again.


  14. John Churchill says:

    Hi Shari- I was so very sad to read that Charles Reid has died. I discovered him in the early 1980`s and loved his work. I also have several dog eared books by him. A truly remarkable and original artist.

    Oh, and by the way, I love your work. Maybe sometime in the future I will make it to one of your workshops in Montreal.

    Yours in watercolor, Vita Churchill, Toronto, ON


  15. Doug Moench says:

    I, too, have Charles Reid’s books. They are on the “short stack” of books on my coffee table where I keep the books I read and refer to most often. Along with a new one by a noted Montreal artist, Shari Blaukopf. He left us strangers a wonderful legacy in his teachings and his unique works of art. What a gift to the world that is.


    • Doug, definitely a gift to the world. I will cherish my books even more knowing that there are no more coming. I also have a short stack of favourites and his are always on the top of the pile.


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