Watercoloring is an art form that uses water to direct the flow of colors on a piece of paper. The best part about watercoloring is that no two pictures are identical because of the different methods and procedures that contribute to this kind of art. It takes a lot of practice to master the techniques that cause the pigmented water to flow or be absorbed in order to create each unique piece of art. Sophomore elementary education major Leah Wright, however, has a good handle on this art type and has used her talent to brighten different areas of Northwestern’s campus.
Wright first discovered her love of watercoloring during high school when she participated in a few art courses. She gained the extra motivation to practice this talent because her older sister also enjoyed watercoloring as a pastime. Wright and her sister used this shared passion to bond and provide tips to one another.
One of the reasons Wright is so passionate about watercoloring is because it is a great stress reliever.
“I enjoy watercoloring because it helps me relax and become calm,” Wright said. “It allows me to get away from the busyness of college.”
Not only does this art form reduce Wright’s stress level, but watercoloring has also become a means of providing encouragement to her friends around campus.
“I just really love making personal creations for people,” Wright said, “especially if they are having a particularly tough week. It’s just a good way to encourage others and hopefully boost their mood.”
One place Wright uses her watercolor paintings to inspire others is within her dorm. As the resident assistant for third south in Stegenga Hall, Wright exercises the opportunity to express her artistic abilities by creating and displaying inspirational illustrations for her residents around the wing.
“I used watercolors to make the nametags that go on my residents’ doors as well as the decorations along the walls,” Wright said.
Between her RA duties and education courses, Wright stays pretty busy. When asked how she finds time within her demanding schedule to watercolor, Wright said, “I usually watercolor on the weekends, but sometimes I will paint while watching movies or during the little free time I have as well.”
Sometimes that extra time goes into searching for new inspiration or watercoloring techniques. Wright receives most of her inspiration from Pinterest, but she also browses the internet for tutorials on the new methods of painting she wants to attempt.
“I usually look for different ideas and techniques on Pinterest,” Wright said. “I especially like to do this with my flower wreath pictures, but then I’ll put my own twist on the design to make it unique.”
Inspired to begin your own watercoloring journey? Well, Wright has some excellent advice for beginners: “I know it sounds a little weird, but just let it flow. Watercoloring is a great way to express yourself. Look up ideas you want to create and just go for it!”