My watercolors are fairly loose and fairly wet. I like to wash a big area on my paintings and then drop in color, and I think the action between that paint and the wet surface is just exciting. You don’t learn that day one, it takes time.



Originally on display January 20 – April 15, 2012

Some painters paint precisely what they see; I use what I see as a stepping off point, and then I change it to what I see in my own mind. I often see these things as a simpler statement than what’s in front of me.

Artist’s Statement


As a “creative”, I have been fortunate in spending most of my life at Harley-Davidson as a designer. I am a graduate of Art Center College of Design and that is where my watercolor interest began. Although my degree is in Industrial Design, Watercolor was an elective, featuring plein air sessions where we painted outdoors, on location.

I have always viewed our motorcycles as the ultimate sculptural art form. Color, shape, texture, contrast, play of light, and proportion are critical elements in their visual success. Those same elements apply when creating a compelling watercolor painting, only in two dimensions rather than three.

Overlapping motorcycle design and watercolor painting has provided me with a very fulfilling lifestyle which answers my passions and emotions. I am inspired by the incredible variety; an idyllic Wisconsin landscape or the challenge of an exciting new Harley-Davidson.

Willie G. Davidson
Chief Styling Officer
Harley-Davidson Motor Co.