Welcome to Dark Roast Watercolors™
Authentic coffee paintings by Steven Mikel
"The world is full of obvious things
which nobody by any chance ever observes."
Sherlock Holmes, The Hound of the Baskervilles
“Life is in the details”
Throughout my life I have always found myself seeing things differently than other people. When others would be noticing the mountain grandeur, I would be fascinated with how the drops of dew clung to the pine needles, or how the pine cones and needles gathered in abstract clumps on the ground pushed together by the mountain breezes. I am drawn to a unique vantage point, such as extreme high or low angles, which accentuate the perspective of the subject and I am captured by the “juxtaposition” of textures and objects.
My artistic vision centers around the revelation of overlooked or unseen experiential moments hidden within everyday life surrounding us. There is so much “inherent design and beauty” to be discovered in the interactions of the line, form and spaces tucked away in the details.
In much the same way as black and white photography was used by Ansel Adams and Edward Weston, painting with coffee provides me with a full range of warm, natural monochromatic tones, and helps me express my vision without the distraction that color can sometimes present and the final painting takes on an almost historical aspect similar to that of an old sepia tone photo.
Human beings have been given an incredible gift... the ability to “see” beyond the physical nature of “sight”. However, in everyday life it is easy to focus on the “Big Picture” and miss many of the little details that hold all the experiences together. My vision is to bring those hidden moments to the surface, and help all of us truly connect with the “Big Pictures” in a deeper, more emotional way. For instance...Yes, the mountain grandeur was picturesque, but the dew and pine needle compositions were there as well, and were part of the experience, even if subconsciously.