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Artists have been inspired by the world around us and nature since the beginning of time, starting with the first cave painting. Seasons and weather, in general, have become associated with particular feelings and emotions. A sunny day can radiate warmth and happy feelings, while a rainy day is typically associated with feelings of sadness or sorrow. Rain is often called gray or even a lazy day for some. Not to say you can’t have light-hearted or happy feelings associated with rain, such as an exciting dance in the rain. When artists paint sceneries with rain, those emotions and more are transmitted. While viewing the following rain-themed paintings, what emotions do you feel, what do you think the artist is trying to convey?

Which is your favorite?    

Paris Street; Rainy Day Gustave Caillebotte, c.1877

Paris Street; Rainy Day Gustave Caillebotte, c.1877

Rainy Street Dusan Malobabic

Rainy Street Dusan Malobabic

The Poetess Ono no Komachi in the Rain Utagawa Toyokuni Ii, c.1791

The Poetess Ono no Komachi in the Rain Utagawa Toyokuni Ii, c.1791

The Rain It Raineth Every Day Norman Garstin, c.1889

The Rain It Raineth Every Day Norman Garstin, c.1889

Rainy Day, Boston Childe Hassam, c.1885

Rainy Day, Boston Childe Hassam, c.1885

Rain or Enclosed Wheat Field in the Rain Vincent van Gogh, c.1889

Rain or Enclosed Wheat Field in the Rain Vincent van Gogh, c.1889

Landscape with Rain Wassily Kandinsky, c.1913

Landscape with Rain Wassily Kandinsky, c.1913

In the Rain (Im Regan) Franz Marc, c.1912

In the Rain (Im Regan) Franz Marc, c.1912

Seascape Study with Rain Cloud John Constable, c.1824

Seascape Study with Rain Cloud John Constable, c.1824

Rain, Storm and Speed William Turner, c.1844

Rain, Storm and Speed William Turner, c.1844

Rain (La pluie) Claude Monet, c.1886

Rain (La pluie) Claude Monet, c.1886

The Singing Butler Jack Vettriano, c.1992

The Singing Butler Jack Vettriano, c.1992

Golconda René Magritte, c.1953

Golconda René Magritte, c.1953

Rain 2 Gerhard Richter, c.1988

Rain 2 Gerhard Richter, c.1988

Jockeys in the Rain Edgar Degas, c.1886

Jockeys in the Rain Edgar Degas, c.1886

Rain Princess Leonid Afremov, c.2014

Rain Princess Leonid Afremov, c.2014

Diligence à Louveciennes Camille Pissarro, c.1870

Diligence à Louveciennes Camille Pissarro, c.1870

Art Project: Rainy day wax-resist watercolor painting

Supplies

  • Watercolor or cardstock weight paper

  • Watercolor paints

  • Medium to wide paintbrush

  • White oil pastel or crayon

  • Cup of water

  • Salt (optional)

Directions

Step 1: Using a white oil pastel or crayon, draw your image on your cardstock. Remember, whatever you draw in white will stay white. For your first drawing, try and create a simple rainfall.

Step  2: Using watercolors, apply the paint to the whole page. Where the white pastel or crayon is will stay white. For a rainy, background try using blues and purple. Start small with a few strokes and add more as you go.

Step 3: Make a more complex rain-themed scene once you get the hang of the resist style art. Add objects and even people to your painting to make it more dynamic and interesting.