California Coast Tiny Paintings

As the waves crash in on the shoreline, they make a majestic sound. The sea breeze hits the face with a light midst and a seagull calls in the background. The California Coast Series is very special to me because of where I grew up. A tiny beach town nestled into the sea cliffs off Highway 1 in California. Most days of the week were filled with foggy mornings and afternoons. I found so much inspiration on those gray colored days. Now that I am older, and living in a desert, my mind often drifts back to the ocean. Luckily, my family still lives in California and my sister in law takes beautiful pictures.

I chose to do a series of paintings to reminisce about home. Number 1 in the series is painted from a photograph taken by Mandy Hilliard of the sea plants growing on the cliffs by the ocean. My brother and his family often go to this beach to enjoy the scenery and sounds. I chose this plant to start the series because it is filled with color and brings me much happiness. There were very few sunny days growing up, but the light would peak through the midst every now and then and touch everything in its rays. The sun brought so much color and happiness when it came out to say hello. Rainbows would brighten the days. This plant reminded me of all the colors possible in those magical moments. 

California Coast Series 1 #2 • Nature Watercolor Painting • Karen Hilliard Art
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Number 2 in the series is of the waves crashing on the rocks during medium tide. Low tide has just come and gone and now the water is slowly creeping its way back in the late afternoon. I wanted to show the algae and the muscles growing on the rocks along with the water forming the sea foam around the subjects. I enjoyed her photograph having a little wave break between the rocks as well. This painting took many hours and was especially fun to recreate from the photograph. I hope you enjoy this series as much as I did painting these tiny paintings. If you have any questions, please send me an email through my contact page. Have a great week!

-Karen Hilliard