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Posts tagged ‘working with watercolor’

Carry One Big Brush

bboyfigure copy

I’ve recently found that a big round brush is a fabulous tool for gesture sketching.  It simply won’t allow for needless details. The brush point however, is versatile enough to go back into forms to provide corrections and accents.  Working exclusively with a big round brush would have felt really uncomfortable for me, just one year ago.

Because, July 9 marked my first Watercolor Wednesday and my year  long journey with watercolor,  In that time, I’ve only really used a few watercolor brushes.  But I’m finding that I’m most comfortable now, working only with this big guy for my small watercolor gesture paintings.brush

The image above and the Watercolor Wednesday painting in yesterday’s post are examples of these gesture sketches.  If you haven’t already tried this minimal touch, I encourage you to give it a go.  All you have to lose is a little time and a couple of sheets of paper.  I always use both sides:)  Sketches that don’t work make fine additions to the collage bag.  The less successful sketches have also taught me volumes about becoming comfortable with loose watercolor.

The benefits of my watercolor experiments in general, have seeped into all of my work.  I’m more free and generally more confident.  I’ve new ideas and loftier goals.

So, I will continue to push my watercolor experiences.  I have no plans to give up Watercolor Wednesdays, am I’m enjoying them a heck of a lot more.  Thank you for your encouragement this past year.  You’ll helped renew my enthusiasm for experimentation and helped me feel free with “less as decidedly more“.

Watercolor Wed. 3

                                            Watercolor on Strathmore Windpower Watercolor Pad

I neglected to leave enough white/light space.   I’ve added a few strokes of opaque white watercolor to regain the white, but now the areas appear gray or dirty.  I also wish I’d left more light space in the faces. I’m learning.

I chickened out and went back to a pencil outline.  Sort of worked ok here, but  next time…

Watercolor Wed.

Watercolor & Sepia ink w/crow quill nib on Strathmore Windpower Watercolor Pad                                                   Attempt #1

It’s no secret that watercolor is not my thing.  It evades me, it makes me crazy.  There are no backsies in watercolor.  I’ve worked with silk dyes and gutta, and made it work, even though there are no opportunities to fix mistakes with opacities in that medium.  BUT, I can’t seem to make watercolor really work for me:

*I want to take advantage of the energy and spontaneity of watercolor-the flexibility within bounds.

*I’m familiar with all of the cool techniques, and know how to apply them…but..I certainly haven’t mastered them.

*Some of my favorite illustrators wield a watercolor brush with an expertise that I dearly envy.  I want to do some of what they can do.

*In addition, the universe has gifted me with a bulk of watercolor paint and paper. Thank you Frieda and Sue.

So, it’s time.  I’m committing myself to tackling watercolor-sketches only mind you, at least until I leach the watercolor envy out of my system, or run short of supplies, whichever comes first:)

Anybody else share a love/hate with watercolor?             All you watercolorists, help, is welcome:)

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