Wrestling with a cup

Hang in just a wee bit more, I know you’re sick of hearing about my struggles with the Direct Watercolor when the challenge (and the month) are long over.

I’m a bit behind on posting, and onto a new summer adventure that I will blog next. But for just now the day I wrestled with and lost to a seemingly simple subject: a mug. One cup of chai in a lovely Mid-Century Modern mug. How hard could it be.

cup_mcm_1a.jpgThe trouble, I think, is pattern. I love the funky pattern on my newly acquired set of cups, and trying to capture the spirit of the pattern kept getting in the way of painting a simple , bold, loose cup of chai.

So here they are, all my attempts.

#1. You’d never guess it’s a white mug.

Just going to pause here to say that this point of a sketch (below) is the exact point at which I am itching to pull out my pen, throw in come line and then go back to rendering pattern.

But I committed to trying this all in direct watercolor, right? So here is #2. Even trying to ‘draw in some line’ with dark paint at the end couldn’t rescue it.

#3 and #4 were a bit better.


I’m going to put it down to a bad day. Or to not having the patience to wait for stuff to dry just a wee bit.

Or maybe I’m just missing my pen too much. But if I got as far as day 25 of the challenge, I’m not throwing the towel in yet. I think. But I am calling this cup of chai done. For now.


About Suhita Shirodkar

obsessive-sketcher. graphic designer.
This entry was posted in challenge, Everyday Sketches, Food, Paintings, watercolor and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Wrestling with a cup

  1. Ivana says:

    I love to see the struggles and admire the perseverance and then enjoy the successful results. Looking pretty good to me! Gives the rest of us some hope!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah, the satisfying result of patience and persistence. #3 and #4 proves it. This “waiting for paint to dry before going back in” … well, let’s just say that it takes a while, quite a while. We’ll get it by-and-by. We just have to keep plugging on.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Terry says:

    I have loved the genuine honesty of your posts. I decided against the challenge because I just did not enjoy it, I do a bit of it, but give me my pen most of the time. My challenge with cups and glasses is getting the perspective right, ovals are the biggest challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Terry, I totally understand not doing it: there’s a right time and place for each of us for a challenge: I am not sure I would have taken it up last year, this year, I’m ready to try working in a way that isn’t always easy for me!


  4. pamlopez15 says:

    Your attempts on four and five proves that when we try and try and we stand a better chance of succeeding. Thanks for showing us the proof in the pudding!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Carla says:

    I think #3 & 4 are great! But they’re all pretty decent. I wouldn’t be calling this an off day!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. pbass wil says:

    When images get some kind of ‘grab’ on me – like, they’re more than just a passing segment of my visual field – I always try to understand why. Your second-to-last mug has some ‘grab’ for me. It doesn’t quite have the contrast of the last one, nor maybe the sheer charming character (from #4’s casual wonky shapes). But #3 is somehow _alive_ for me. It just hit me: it reminds me of a Chagal detail – maybe floating in the air! I like the foggy blending of the whites & greens in the middle. :^)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. jofox2108 says:

    I liked the last two, they are recognisable and have a really lovely liveliness to them!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m not tired of these posts at all! I’m learning all kinds of things from your challenge and struggles!! 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Berrnadette says:

    Thank you for sharing…the good and not so good days of your paintings. Your practice pays off just from #1 sketch to #3 and then #4. It’s difficult to give up the familiar but you did and you have succeeded! It takes more time to wait for paint to dry but the results bring life to your work.

    Liked by 1 person

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