Floral Watercolor Paintings by Inna Petrashkevich
Inna Petrashkevich lives in a small town of Orsha in Belarus. A small town in a small Eastern European country. One of those towns untouched and unspoiled by civilization. Time has slowed down in Orsha, and the 21st century feels like the 18th.
Yet, Orsha was founded in 1067, making it one of the oldest towns in Belarus. The town was a witness to the Grand Duchy of Lithuania in the 15th century, one of the first Calvinist (Protestant) orders in the 16th century, and the large Jewish settlement in the 16th and on. The Russian Empire took over the city from Poland in the 18th century after the FIrst Polish partitions. While Napolean troops burned it to the ground in the early 19th century on the way to Moscow. Fast forward to the late 20th century, and the town experienced the after-effects of one of the world's worst ecological disaster, the Chernobyl nuclear meltdown. It is still recovering from it.
It is here where Inna creates. It is the little things that she notices around her. Far away from civilization and modern luxuries, perhaps it is here that it is easier to notice small plants and creatures around her. Orsha is surrounded by one of the densest and older forests in Europe. It is here where everything is breathing around you. We might not hear their sounds, but plants and flowers are breathing too. Her floral watercolor paintings make us feel exactly that. She is not painting inanimate colorful objects. She is painting live creatures. She is painting flowers that want to look their best and give us joy. She is painting flowers that are diluted in the morning fog. They are floating like clouds. They are here one second and disappear in the next one.
Her watercolor technique is perfect for this tenderness, this evanescence, these fleeting moments when flowers are blooming one day and vanish the next one — these short but beautiful moments she is capturing for us.
Inna Petrashkevich lives in Belorussia. She is a successful illustrator who has been painting for 20+ years. Inna regularly travels and gives master classes in watercolor in Eastern Europe. She is shy and reserved in person. She wants her art to speak for itself.
Yet, she has a significant following on social media. She likes to talk about many of her designs that their way to the homes of so many people. There was a Chinese company that "copied" her designs and now manufacturing housewares with her art without the proper royalties. Then there's a Russian company that has her floral designs on kitchenware — properly licensed (thank you!). What she is enjoying most is human interaction, and somehow, she managed to become an Instagram sensation. 20,000 people follow her on Instagram!!! Yes, these are real people. From all over the world.
Inna paints almost every day. It is not easy to be an artist. But to me, it also means that she is inspired every day. And that makes me very very jealous :)