He(art) of Soil

I have given myself too many things to do: no surprises there. I have signed up for three online courses, all running at the same time, while continuing to work three days a week at the desk job. I did know what I was doing, and all of it seemed like a really good idea at the time, and I’m already slightly behind. But then I get lifetime access to all three courses, and you can do them all at your own pace, so there is no rush really.

One of the classes I signed up for is a delightful mixed media watercolour course called He(art) of Soil, organised by Leaca Young (you can find her on Instagram here). It’s very accessible, with ten mixed media artists each contributing a simple project, and there’s still time to sign up if you’re interested – go to Leaca’s website in the link above for more information. All the proceeds go to World Central Kitchen, in aid of the conflict in Ukraine. The projects in this course are based on a very limited palette: just three shades of blue, and three shades of yellow, for the Ukrainian flag. The paints are made from soil and pigment and look really beautiful. You can see more about how they’re made here. I didn’t purchase the paints – it would have been very expensive to have them shipped from the USA to the UK, and I don’t need more watercolour paints, so I’m adapting what I’ve already got. You can see my substitute palette below.

A6 folded sketchbook for The Art of Soil online class

I don’t need much of an excuse to splash some paint around, so I had a very happy hour or so this afternoon painting some collage papers in these colours.

delicious pile of vintage and modern papers painted with acrylics and watercolours

I’m collecting and completing all the lessons in a little folded A6 sketchbook made with three sheets of A3 paper, folded and cut to make a little zine-type booklet. If you’re not familiar with the technique, you can find instructions for making a one-page booklet here. One of the tutorials in this class includes instructions for making this kind of booklet, which will be perfect for keeping everything together.

The projects are very simple and suitable for all abilities, and I guess you could make them as quick or as complicated as you like.

Page based on Tiffany’s Hearts project – find her on Instagram here

It’s really interesting to work with such a limited palette, and surprising to see just how many shades of blue, green, and yellow you can actually make. A lot of the artists remark on the texture of the watercolours that they’re using, describing them as quite gritty. My paints are all very smooth, so I might try using some watercolour texture medium for some of the classes, just to see how it turns out.

Loosely worked page based on Megan’s Bird of Peace tutorial. You can see her work here

Regardless of how long you might have been making art, in whatever medium, I love the fact that there is always something more to learn, something more to practice, and plenty more ways to grow. I really like the fact that this online class supports a great cause, and that the artists have given their time and skills so freely. I’m looking forward to completing more of the classes in this course.

Author: Karen

Textile and mixed media artist

7 thoughts on “He(art) of Soil”

    1. Me too 🙂 I really just signed up to see how an online course works/is constructed but actually I’m enjoying it for what it is

  1. I also signed up for several classes thisFall. I am having knee replacement surgery Oct 10 and am gathering things so I won’t be bored in recovery–and my stack of books to read has become very tall. I like the idea of a limited palate.

    1. It’s really interesting to see what you can do with so few colours. Good luck with the surgery! It sounds like you have plenty to do while you recover x

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: