domenica 29 aprile 2012

textures - watercolour + gravel + sand

texture swatch - watercolour + gravel + sand
texture swatch 
canson montval

watercolour + gravel + sand
detail of the above watercolour wash /texture swatch showing textures created with gravel and sand

....this swatch / experiment was inspired by Nita Engles chapter WORKING WITH UNUSUAL MATERIALS .. Using Gravel and Sand.... HOW TO MAKE COLOUR  PAINT ITSELF 

textures - watercolour + alcohol + salt

texture swatch -  watercolour + alcohol + salt
initial watercolour wash  with alcohol and salt
canson fontenay cold press 300g/m2

.....alcohol was squirted in areas and also applied with cotton wool bud... salt was then sprinkled in areas .... the paper became translucent where the alcohol was applied .............when the paper was bone dry after a few days I was able to float another wash on top the initial wash.

giovedì 26 aprile 2012


initial watercolour study 
32 x 41cm
canson fontenay
still life - painted from life no pencil WIP 

iPad sketch - #2

"water bottle"
iPad sketch #2 
 finger paint sketch app 
shading tools sketchy + chrome
sketching from life 

posting another quick iPad sketch .... when i was sketching this I just assumed I could continue scrolling down the page to finish the sketch  and that the paper size was larger than the screen size ..wrong !  ... the pro version might be different . There is no erase tool in the free version but you can adjust the colour to erase . I like  the shading tools of the app  here I used sketchy and chrome.

martedì 24 aprile 2012

iPad sketch

"watercolour brushes "
iPad sketch 
finger sketch paint app - sketchy 
drawing from life 

I wanted to share one of my first i-pad sketches ... sketching from life with just my finger using a free app of finger sketch paint  - sketchy setting . For the last couple of weeks I've been enjoying sketching quickly everything and anything from life to explore this app's really exciting to draw with....lots to learn and other apps to experiment with ..the options are endless...I'm suprised by the degree of precision / detail you can achieve by drawing with an index finger and fascinated how the images are generated ...I'd like to try drawing with a pen or painting with a brush for the i-pad.

lunedì 23 aprile 2012

wild iris

"wild iris" 
initial watercolour study
32 x41cm 
painted from life of my favorite wild flowers at this time of year are the beautiful purple blue wild irises is an initial study /watercolour wash  of a single flower head . 

domenica 22 aprile 2012

asparagus - asparagi

green asparagus 
watercolour study WIP
32 x 41 cm 
painted from life no pencil's the season for asparagus here ...posting a  quick study WIP I painted of a  bunch  asparagus before cooking  aspargus risotto  and aspargus with boiled eggs  ...... might add some shadows at the bottom ... will have to paint some traditional  white aspargus from Bassano - asparagi bianchi del Bassano - next  . 

mercoledì 11 aprile 2012

textures - watercolour + gauze

watercolour + gauze"
texture swatch 

I laid strips of  cotton gauze  in various ways on a blue wash  ... wet on dry ,wet in wet , wet gauze , painted gauze,wet gauze.... to see different textures and effects that could be made  .... I'd like to try this with a finer and larger pieces of  gauze ...the gauze dries relatively quickly . 
....a few years ago we visited Zentrum Paul Klee  museum in Bern Switzerland ..the collection was incredible... ...Paul Klee employed  watercolour on gauze and paper in his painting " Ab ovo."
You can also see how John Squire incoporates material in his watercolour  on his video which i posted last year here : 

textures - watercolour + hessian

"hessian and watercolour" 
texture swatch 

another texture swatch ,which a friend suggested to try ,  this time with hessian using an old potatoe sack... you can still see the fibres on the painting . I wet the paper in some areas leaving it dry in other areas to see the diferences when I laid down the painted hessian ... as the hessian absorbs so much water and pigment  I decided to pour the remaining  pigment on top of the hessian on the lhs when the paper was flat  ..the result is a bit of a mess but it's interesting how it dried .
.... although  the weave is much larger and coarser than gauze  the resulting patterns / imprint  are  similiar to the gauze above
...thanks again Jean for your suggestion.

martedì 10 aprile 2012

colour theory - transparency + opacity - lifting + staining characteristics of watercolours

"red + purples"
testing for transparency + opacity  -  testing for lifting + staining properties 
watercolour pigments 

"yellows + blues"
testing for transparency + opacity  -  testing for lifting + staining properties
"watercolour pigments" 

testing for transparency + opacity  -  testing for lifting + staining properties
"watercolour pigments" 

....following Maggie Latham's 5th post on Exploring Colour  I'm posting one of the exercises suggested this month by Maggie   looking at properties and characteristics of watercolour pigments ... a simple exercise to see if colours are transparent (semi transparent) or opaque (semi opaque) to read more see Maggie's excercise 3 seemed a good opportunity to also test lifting and staining properties at the same time on the same sheet  ....inspired by some basic exercises  in  Linda Kemp's  Watercolour Painting Outside the Lines .... at the end I spent some time cross referencing with W&N colour charts and making additional notes of the characteristics of the pigments on the colour swatches ... ... the exercises will make valuable personal references  ..
The excercises are time consuming  but it's interesting to see  which transparent pigments are staining  or non-staining  and which pigments are opaque , semi opaque and or sedimentary .... alot of knowledge is already gained from painting and your own experience but actually making the time to make the tests and charts is invaluable.

...adding a note to my post as I've just finished reading Zoltan Szabo's chapter on Qualities of Transparent Watercolour pigments  "Watercolour Tips and Tricks " ... he explains the properties with great clarity and there are some excellent excercises to follow.

lunedì 2 aprile 2012

THE CA' D' ORO - Crenellations

Gothic  Venetian Architecture  C15th 
Venice , Italy 
watercolour 56 x 38 cm  
Canson Fontenay 300 g/m2 

domenica 1 aprile 2012

textures - watercolour + string # 2

"watercolour on string rolled on wet paper and then placed on wet wash again "

" watercolour on string rolled  uniformly on dry paper"

"watercolour string dragged vertically on wet paper" 

"painted string dragged vertically on wet in wet wash"

...posting  a few more watercolour washes with string used for creating texture this time rolling and dragging the string  on wet and dry paper...the patterns are all quite geometric with circular and horizotal /vertical motions ..will post a few more washes later that are more organic.

textures - string + watercolour

"wet on wet + painted string/twine" 

"initial wash painted string wet on dry + second wash  wet on wet painted string"

"wet on wet wash + painted string"

"wet on dry wash + wet string "

"painted string + circles "

....above are a few initial swatches showing textures created with string / twine + watercolour using circular motions...I was asked if  I'd ever tried using string when I posted "aluminium foil + watercolour washes"  ..thankyou Jean for your suggestion.