Watercolor by Natallia Valyukevich

Watercolor by Natallia Valyukevich.

I would like to express my gratitude to my friend Charles Mandel, who encouraged me to watercolor painting, and my Mom, who makes my work possible.
Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

I did not choose watercolor painting. But watercolor painting chose me.

I am a Belarusian artist. I studied at the Belarusian State Pedagogical University to become an artist-teacher. After graduating from university, I worked in a printing house as a designer for several years. I did computer sketches for covers, labels, albums and many other printing products. I was successful at my workplace, but the office atmosphere did not match my freedom-loving nature. I quit my job and became a freelancer.

I studied three-dimensional programs on my own and worked in the computer games industry for 15 years. I created lots of three-dimensional houses, monsters, ruins, and crumpled tanks. My child grew up. I saw that he plays a lot of computer games. My work began to burden me. I was not sure if I was doing something good for the children.

I left my work. It was a shock for my family. I started retouching and colorizing old photos remotely.

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor by Natallia Valyukevich

Watercolor by Natallia Valyukevich

I met an excellent customer from the USA. For several years we restored old photos of American baseball players. It was a great interesting work. Some of my colorizations are in National Baseball Hall of Fame. You can find my colorings in the online magazine Daily Mail. 11:50 BST, 26 May 2017, which is a British daily. And you can find my colorings in magazines Baseball History & Art.

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

Watercolor portrait by Natallia Valiukevich

We did a great job. Next  my customer began to encourage me to paint watercolors of American baseball players.

Watercolor portrait! Its impossible. Watercolor is not suitable for portraits. I was sure that it was impossible.

But I did not want to lose the job. I had to agree. I had some of the most difficult months in my life. I forced myself to learn painting with watercolor. I did not expect that I would succeed, but still I hoped that I could manage.

A few months later I had a product for my client. We made 96 excellent watercolor portraits. Almost all of them were purchased by collectors. I look forward to a series of baseball cards made from those watercolors.

I received touching letters from the relatives of the baseball players. I think that we did an excellent job.

Academic art 19th century had a great influence on me. Peter Sokolov and Karl Bryullov. And also emotional realism – Steve Hank.

I have now a unique technique for multi-layer watercolor. I do not mix colors on the palette. But I make thin layers of pure colors on my work. I get an amazing result, which is only available in watercolor painting.

20-year experience as a graphic designer has become for me a huge support in watercolor painting. I photograph and process the photos myself. I control this process and I know how to do well for watercolors.

I had a very sharp transition to traditional artists. Painting is an element that has a very powerful effect on a person. It took me away and I had to use all my willpower to control it. I do not need additional incentives for inspiration. Yet I have to make an effort to focus on everyday things. I immerse myself in the process of painting. I love the characters I draw. I feel their joys and sorrows. It is amazing. But sometimes it scares me.

I started painting with watercolor in June 2017.

A year later I started painting for my portfolio. I showed my works in international groups. I was totally insecure as I saw a hundred shortcomings in my works. But, wow, what a great feedback did I get! I had hundreds of likes and hundreds of enthusiastic comments. This is incredibly inspiring. Now I can say for sure that watercolor painting is my favorite work.

I am working now on paintings for international exhibitions. And yes, I have a lot of new ideas.

Watercolor by Natallia Valyukevich

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