Featured Artist Christelle Grey

Watercolour artist Christelle Grey grew up in Africa, and her paintings reflect a deep connection with the wildlife. To enjoy more of her art, please visit her website.

 

“Sunset In Africa” Watercolour, 17cm x 25cm by artist Christelle Grey. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Sunset In Africa” Watercolour, 17cm x 25cm

 

I have always been inspired by the textured beauty of nature: the rough and dusty folds of an elephant’s skin while he leisurely scratches his back on a gnarled tree trunk; the downy softness of a cat’s fur while she stretches contentedly in a beam of sunshine; the gentle ripple of water over smoothly undulating scales of koi fish as they circle hypnotically just under the surface.

 

 “In Motion” Watercolour, 34cm x 49cm by artist Christelle Grey. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“In Motion” Watercolour, 34cm x 49cm

 

When the doctor prescribed taking up something relaxing while I recuperated from open heart surgery ten years ago, I decided to take up a brush and try my hand at the challenge of capturing our world of texture through layers of watercolour. Little did I know that this suggested therapy would develop into such a passion for watercolours.

 

“All Is Well” Watercolour, 23cm x 30cm by artist Christelle Grey. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“All Is Well” Watercolour, 23cm x 30cm

 

Watercolour is challenging and unforgiving, but so satisfying once you master it. I am mostly self taught, with a few workshops along the way to inspire and motivate me in the company of other artists.

 

 “Companion” Watercolour, 30cm x 43cm by artist Christelle Grey. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Companion” Watercolour, 30cm x 43cm

 

I approach every painting by imagining how it feels.

 

“Sibling Love” Watercolour, 40cm x 30cm by artist Christelle Grey. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Sibling Love” Watercolour, 40cm x 30cm

 

Everything has texture, and if you can imagine how it feels then you can capture it in paint. I am not afraid to get my fingers into it—painting every elephant wrinkle, fold, dot, and mark and softening it with my fingers while still wet.

 

“Leopard” Watercolour, 50cm x 70cm by artist Christelle Grey. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Leopard” Watercolour, 50cm x 70cm

 

I developed my technique for fur through a great deal of trial and error. I had learned that the secret to watercolours is in the amount of water used: more water, less control; less water, more control. You need the same amount of wetness in the paper and brush for good control. My fur, however is a wet-on-dry technique, using a small flat brush (size 0 or even 000) to soften all the edges once the paint is dry.

 

“Playful Friends” Watercolour, 55cm x 72cm by artist Christelle Grey. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Playful Friends” Watercolour, 55cm x 72cm

 

It’s easy to get carried away and paint too much detail in the fur.  I have learned to stop when I get the feeling that I can run my fingers though the fur—or the lion’s mane!

 

"African Lion” Watercolour on paper, 40cm x 30cm by artist Christelle Grey. See her portfolio at www.ArtsyShark.com

“African Lion” Watercolour on paper, 40cm x 30cm

 

My favourite subject is the wildlife of Africa.  I live in Australia now, but still feel a deep connection with Africa as I grew up there and know the animals well. It’s a peaceful pleasure to connect to a memory of a stunning animal through every brushstroke as its character takes form on my canvas.

 

“Curiosity” Watercolour, 38cm x 39cm by artist Christelle Grey. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Curiosity” Watercolour, 38cm x 39cm

 

It gives me joy to share beauty, personality, and emotion through my art. The biggest challenge of a portrait is the eyes—capturing that glimpse of the soul through the smooth, transparent glass of the eye’s window. The eyes are often the focus of a painting and it’s important to get the shape, shadows, reflections and highlights accurate. You can almost put an entire separate painting inside the eye.

 

“Emusing” Watercolour, 29cm x 22cm by artist Christelle Grey. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Emusing” Watercolour, 29cm x 22cm

 

My next art adventure will be to learn the secrets of oil painting. The studio will be thoroughly covered up as I step outside of my comfort zone of tidy watercolour clean ups!

 

Artist Christelle Grey invites you to follow her on Facebook and Instagram.

 

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Comments

  1. Just amazing paintings, some of them almost dont look like watercolours at all

  2. Elmaret Kriel says:

    Christelle
    Unbelievable to see such beauty through your hands. I believe you know the detail of the animals better than us in Africa. Enjoy my leopard everyday… your roommate from school. Pragtig

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