Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Logs and Landscapes


Avent Cabin
Elkmont - Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Watercolor painting by
Karen A. Cooke


In addition to painting, I enjoy hiking and since I live close to the Smoky Mountains, I do quite a bit of hiking in that area.  I love to take photos of the cabins to paint later;  or if time permits, I like to paint on location.  The painting above was painted from a photo I took in late February on a rare warm day.  The trees were still bare, but the sky was clear and blue. 

History of the cabin above:
From the 1920s to the 1940s, Avent Cabin served as a vacation retreat and art studio for Mayna Teanor Avent. She spent summers in this cabin and painted watercolors of the Smoky Mountain landscape.  The large window was added to let in natural light for Mayna's studio.

Would I love to have a cabin studio like this one! 

Today's blog will give directions on painting this landscape with emphasis on painting a log structure. 




Supplies Needed:

Watercolor paper (type and size of your choice)  - I used a 9" x 12" piece
Masking Tape
Watercolor board
Brushes: flat, liner and round (size of your choice based on the size of your paper)
Paint:
  • Cobalt Blue
  • Sepia
  • Payne's Gray
  • Cadmium Orange
  • Yellow Ocher
  • Sap Green
  • Hooker Green Deep
  • Burnt Umber
  • Vandyke Brown

Painting Instructions:
Lightly sketch this painting on your paper.  I sketched this drawing on my watercolor paper. However, if you feel you may need to erase multiple times, you may want to drawn on a piece of sketch paper and transfer your completed sketch to the watercolor paper. I discuss how this can be accomplished in my blog of May 11, 2016.

As a reminder: Multiple erasures can damage watercolor paper and cause pooling of water as well as differences in the way the paint is absorbed into or on the paper. Deep sketch marks will show up in a finished painting, even if they are erased. Correct perspective is an important part of this painting. Confirm that you like the perspective that you have executed in your sketch before you start painting. A poorly executed sketch done in a hurry cannot be overcome no matter how great a job one does with the paint.

Masking the trees:
For ease in painting the sky, the lighter trees can be masked in using masking fluid.  Do not move forward to painting the sky until the masking fluid is dry. 

Sky:
Use a large round brush to paint the sky area.  Wet the sky from the top down to the horizon using clean water. Using a pale wash of Cadmium Orange drop in some color in various locations in the sky.  See above photo for location.  While this is still wet, paint in a wash of the Cobalt Blue, apply the paint working from the top of the painting down to the horizon .  However, do not completely cover the entire sky area.  Allow some white areas to remain.  Using a tissue or paper towel, lift some of the paint to create lighter areas in the sky for clouds, if needed.  While the sky is still wet, drop in a pale green made from the Cobalt Blue and Cadmium Orange at the horizon for the shrubs.  Allow to dry.  

Cabin:
Using a wash of light Payne's Gray, Sepia, Burnt Umber and Vandyke Brown, painting wet on wet, fill in the logs of the cabin.  Deepen in areas of shadows.  Allow the chinking between the logs to remain unpainted.  Refer to the photo above for the location of the light and dark areas.  Allow to dry.  When dry, use a dry brush and darker shades of your paint, paint in the details on your logs.    A liner brush was used to add detail to the logs as well as the boards on the porch rains, roof, etc.  Again, refer to the photo above for paint color and placement.  Allow to dry.

Windows/Doors:  Using Payne's Gray, paint in the windows and doors.  Allow to dry.  Use a utility knife to scrape off a line in the paint to indicate the panes of the windows. 

Cabin Rock Foundation:  Using Payne's Gray, Burnt Umber and Sap Green (very weak washes of all of these colors), painting wet on wet, drop in these colors and allow them to blend and merge.  Allow to dry.  Using a liner brush and Sepia, outline the shape of the rocks.  Allow to dry.

Trees:
Remove the masking fluid.  The hardwood trees are painted in the following manner:
  • Wet the truck with a clean wash of plain water.
  • Using a wash of Sepia and Payne's Gray and using a round brush, paint along one side of the truck and allow the water to pull the paint across the truck. 
  • Deepen the color in various location on the truck especially where a limb intersects.  Allow to dry. 
  • Using a round brush and Sepia, paint in the small branches. 
Evergreen tree:
  • Using a wash of Sap Green and a round brush start at the top of the tree and brush in the branches referring to the photo above.  Deepen the color in various locations especially near the truck by adding cobalt Blue to the Sap Green to deepen the color.  Allow to dry.  Using Sepia, paint in the truck.  Be certain to skip a few spaces to indicate the branches growing across the truck.  Allow to dry. 

Foreground:

Using a pale wash of Sap Green, Payne's Gray and Burnt Umber, lay in the foreground.  Use deeper shades near the tree line and under the cabin.  Refer to the photo for placement.  The lighter area in the center running down from the cabin is a footpath which is painted using Payne's Gray.  Allow to dry.  Cover the cabin, trees and sky area with a piece of paper or a paper towel, and spatter the foreground with Burnt Umber. 

Finishing touches:
Review your painting and add any shadows that may be needed for depth.  Check the cabin and trees for any details you would like to add.

Congratulations!

Happy Painting!
Karen Cooke


Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Sunshine, Blooms and Painting Outside


After a morning of yard work, I could not think of a better way to relax than to do a quick loose watercolor outside in the yard. 

Painting outside can be challenging if you are painting on location away from home; however, painting in one's own yard is an enjoyable way to spend an afternoon or just an hour.    I set up my portable easel in from of an azalea brush that was just starting to bloom. 

All elements of this painting are loosely painted with minimal amounts of detail.  The painting was also painted on a slight slant to allow the paint to flow on the paper. 

Supplies Needed:
Watercolor paper (type and size of your choice)  - I used a 9" x 12" pad of practice paper 140# weight
Note:  Practice paper is intended for practice of brush strokes, quick paintings, etc.  This paper does NOT allow for very wet paintings or overworking.  Paint cannot be lifted from this type of paper without damaging the paper.  Feel free to use what ever type of paper you would like. 

Brushes: round (size of your choice based on the size of your paper)
Paint:
  • Alizarin Crimson
  • Sap Green
  • Hooker Green
  • Ultramarine Blue
  • Cadmium Yellow Dark
Note:  if you are painting outside you will need to be portable with all of your equipment.  If painting at a location away from your home, double check all of your painting supplies before you leave home.  While it is easy to simply run inside for a forgotten item when painting at home, a forgotten piece of equipment can often mean an abrupt end.


Painting Instructions:
Lightly sketch the flower on the paper.  Do not make this a detailed sketch.

Background:
Using a round brush and  washes of Sap Green, Hooker Green, Ultramarine Blue, paint in the background area to give some color and shape to the branches of the bush.  Drop in some Alizarin Crimson in a pale wash to indicate other flower blooms.

Flower:
Using the round brush and a pale wash of Alizarin Crimson and painting wet on wet, paint the flower working from light to dark and leaving some of the spaces unpainted and white for highlights.  Refer to the photo above for color placement.   While the wash is still wet, use the tip of your brush and place some dots of a deeper Alizarin Crimson on the middle petal and the two pedals adjacent to it.  Refer to the photo. 

Stamen:
Using the round brush and a deeper wash of Alizarin Crimson, paint in the stamen and dot the end with Cadmium Yellow for the pollen. 

Finishing touches:
Add a few leaves, using your round brush and various shades of Hooker Green and Sap Green.  Refer to photo. 

Tip:  Loose watercolors are intended to be loose and flowing, so not attempt to paint in details - that is the joy of loose watercolor painting!

Happy Painting!
Karen

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Watercolor Journaling - How to Get Started

Watercolor journal and supplies


The trend today is toward journaling of all kinds - from daily diary type journals to trip journals and everything in between.  This post is intended to give some basic tips on how to get started with a watercolor journal.

Watercolor journaling is simply a way to put down thoughts and locations via the media of watercolor.  It takes some drawing skills and a basic knowledge of watercolor painting.  But, it does not need to be a scary task.  A way to transition into watercolor journaling is by first starting with a daily sketchbook and then moving into adding watercolors.  The more one sketches, the better one gets at recording what is seen.  So, if you have never considered a daily sketch book before, you may want to do so now.

Materials needed:
  • Pencil (mechanical or drawing pencil with sharpener)
  • Eraser
  • Watercolor journal (I use one with 140 weight watercolor paper)
  • Watercolor brush ( used a portable travel brush specifically for painting on location)
  • Portable watercolor set (I use a Windsor Newton set which opens to a palette)
  • Small water container (I use bottled water and use the cap for the brush)
Where do I start?
As you can see from the photo above, I like to watercolor journal in specific locations rather than simply doing a daily sketch/watercolor journal.

The secret to any journaling is to get down the basic shapes with not a lot of detail.  This is not intended to be a detailed watercolor painting, but simply your impression of the location. 

Steps involved:
  • Start off with a pencil sketch.  Don't make this sketch detailed.  You are telling the story of the moment and recording it with your own artistic impression. 
  • I try to box off a section of my watercolor journal rather than paint to the edge.  So, I drawn a box about 1/4 to 1/2 inch in from the edge and keep my drawing within that area.  This will help keep the paper from buckling from the water.  (Refer to photo.)
  • Don't use a lot of water in your painting.  You will not be working the paint in the same way as one would in a wet watercolor.  Remember this is supposed to be a fun way to record a location or thing - not a watercolor masterpiece.
  • Approach your painting  in the same method as you would any watercolor painting - working from light to dark; i.e.  Laying in the sky first and moving forward.
  • Depending on your location, don't be surprised by people watching you work. 
Most important part of journaling:  let this be fun!  Don't put pressure on yourself to "achieve" - simply enjoy being and painting.  As you get accustomed to painting on location or journaling it will become easier and more natural.  As with all things - practice.

There are many books on the market specially addressing watercolor journaling.   One of these books may be helpful and give you additional tips and encouragement.  Also, browse through an art store either online or in person and look for specific journals, brushes, paint sets, etc. to make your journaling easier.

The most important part of journaling is enjoyment!  If journaling is not the way you like to paint, then  paint in the way and at the place and location that works for you.

Happy Painting!
Karen



Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Painting in the Style of Edward Wesson

English Countryside
A watercolor painting by Karen A. Cooke


The painting above, titled "English Countryside" was painted in the style of Edward Wesson.  Edward Wesson (April 29, 1910 - 1983) was an English watercolor artist.  His work is known for its simplicity, boldness and mastery of brushwork.  He is remembered by many painters as being a very encouraging teacher as well as for his excellent paintings.

Today's exercise will be in using his painting style to capture the English countryside.  So, let's get started.

Supplies Needed:
Watercolor paper (type and size of your choice)  - I used a 9" x 12" piece
Masking Tape
Watercolor board
Brushes: flat, liner and round (size of your choice based on the size of your paper)
Paint:
  • Windsor Blue
  • Sepia
  • Payne's Gray
  • Alizarin Crimson
  • Yellow Ocher
  • Burnt Umber

Painting Instructions:
No sketching is required.  Simply determine your horizon.

Sky:
Use a large round brush to paint the sky area.  Wet the sky from the top down to the horizon using clean water. Using a pale wash of Windsor Blue paint in the sky using the painting above as a guide.  While the sky is still went drop in a light wash of red and yellow ochre in various locations.  Do not completely cover the entire sky area.  Allow some white areas to remain.  Using a tissue or paper towel, lift some of the paint to create lighter areas in the sky for clouds, if needed.    Note that the sky lightens as it approaches the horizon.   Allow to dry.  

Background:
Using a deeper wash of Windsor Blue mixed with Paynes Gray, paint the distant hills.  Allow to dry. 

Church:

Using a darker wash of Payne's Gray and a smaller round brush, paint in the church spire and steeple.  Add the roof of the church using a medium wash of Alizarin Crimson.  Allow to dry.

Trees:
Using a flat brush use Yellow Ocher and Sepia to paint the trees.  Vary the intensity and alternate the colors to achieve the shading in the trees.  Be certain to leave spacing between the branches.  Using this same mix, paint the shorter trees and bushes.  Refer to the painting above for placement. 

Foreground:
Using a mix of Sepia and Yellow Ocher, paint the foreground using broad sweeping strokes.  Alternate the color.  Allow to dry. 

Finishing touches:
Using a liner brush and Sepia, add the tree branches.  Also add any detail lines in the foreground. 

Congratulations!  Sign your painting!  You have just completed a watercolor in the tradition of Edward Wesson!

Happy Painting!
Karen
 






Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Happy Spring! How to Paint a Loose Watercolor Daffodill

"Spring"
A watercolor painting by
Karen A. Cooke


Happy Spring!  The daffodil has always been the flower that tells me that it is Spring!  I have loved this bright yellow flowers since I was a little girl.  In springtime, we would pass a huge field of these flowers on my way to and from school.  An elderly woman would sell bouquets of these and my mom would stop and let me purchase bouquets of these flowers regularly on my way home from school.  These flowers always make me smile!

The painting above is a quick, loose watercolor from a photo I snapped in our front yard. 

All elements of this painting are loosely painted with minimal amounts of detail.  The painting was also painted on a slight slant to allow the paint to flow on the paper.

Supplies Needed:
Watercolor paper (type and size of your choice)  - I used a 95" x 7"  watercolor sketchbook
Brushes: round (size of your choice based on the size of your paper)
Paint:
  • Cadmium Orange
  • Cadmium Yellow Light
  • Cadmium Yellow Dark
  • Sap Green
  • Ultramarine Blue
Painting Instructions:
Lightly sketch the flower on the page along with the stem and leaf placement.    You can use my painting as a reference, take a photo yourself or paint in plein air outside. 

Flower:
Using the round brush and painting wet on wet, paint the flower working from light to dark and leaving some of the spaces unpainted and white for highlights.  Refer to the photo above for color placement.  White the flower is still wet, drop in the Sap Green at the base of the flower.

Stem and Leaves:
Using the round brush and painting wet on wet, use shades of Sap Green and Ultramarine Blue to paint the stem and leaves.  Note the yellow at the base of the stem as well as lighter shades of green and blue. 

Finishing touches:
See if you need to add addition leaves or splashes of yellow or light green in various locations on the page. 

Tip:  Loose watercolors are intended to be loose and flowing, so not attempt to paint in details - that is the joy of loose watercolor painting!

Photo used for the painting

Congratulations!

Happy Painting!
Karen



Friday, March 17, 2017

"Splash" - How to paint a drop of water

"Splash"
5" x 7" watercolor painting
by Karen A. Cooke


Painting water can be challenging.  Since water itself is clear, the key to painting water is to use the color of it's surroundings.  In the painting above, I used blue to reflect the color of the sky and make the water stand out on the paper.

The painting above was painted with only one color of paint - Windsor Blue  The intensity of the color is regulated by the amount of water added to the paint and how the paint is layered on the paper.
Using this type of technique will help beginners understand the strength of color when water is added and how much water to use.  This technique also helps with learning how to layer the paint to achieve color variation.

Supplies Needed:
Watercolor paper (type and size of your choice)  - I used a 5" x 7" piece
Masking tape or watercolor notebook
Watercolor board, if using sheet paper
Brushes: round (size of your choice based on the size of your paper)
Paint:
  • Windsor Blue

Painting Instructions:
I sketched the shape of the water splash to make the painting easier to do. 

Splash:
Look at the painting above and using a pale wash of blue start painting at the top and work your way down to the bottom of the splash.  While this pale wash is still wet, start adding additional washes of Windsor Blue in deeper intensities allowing the washes to blend together.  Refer to the painting above for location.  Allow to dry. 

Water/Reflection at base of splash:
Painting wet on wet add washes of blue in the same way as the splash with the deepest intensity near the base of the splash.  Be certain to leave some areas unpainted and white.  Allow to dry. 

Finishing touches:
Using a liner brush, add a some deeper lines of Windsor Blue to define areas of the splash.   Refer to the photo above.  


Congratulations!

Happy Painting!
Karen

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

How to Paint Storm Clouds


Texas Storm Clouds
9" x 12" watercolor paper
by Karen A. Cooke


This watercolor was painted from a photo taken by a friend during a recent trip to Texas.  I liked the clouds in the photo and asked permission to use her photo to demonstrate painting clouds.

Photo used for painting reference on left;
Painting on right


The painting above provides great practice for painting storm clouds..  All elements of this painting are loosely painted with minimal amounts of detail.  The painting was also painted on a slight slant to allow the paint to flow on the paper.

Supplies Needed:
Watercolor paper (type and size of your choice)  - I used a 9" x 12" piece
Masking Tape
Watercolor board
Brushes: flat, liner and round (size of your choice based on the size of your paper)
Old credit card or palette knife
Paint:
  • Sepia
  • Payne's Gray
  • Cadmium Orange
  • Burnt Sienna
  • Yellow Ocher
  • Ultramarine Blue

Painting Instructions:
Lightly sketch the horizon on the page.  No other sketching will be needed. 

Sky:
Use a large round brush to paint the sky area.  Wet the sky from the top down to the horizon using clean water. Using a pale wash of Cadmium Orange drop in some color in various locations in the sky.  See above photo for location.  While this is still wet, paint in a wash of the Paynes Gray, apply the paint working from the top of the painting down to the horizon.  Add Ultramarine Blue in various areas of the sky and also increase the intensity of the Paynes Gray in some areas.   However, do not completely cover the entire sky area.  Allow some white areas to remain.  Using a tissue or paper towel, lift some of the paint to create lighter areas in the sky for clouds, if needed.  Pick up the painting and tilt to the bottom left to add some flow to the watercolor on the page and create some movement in the clouds.  Allow to dry.  

Horizon Trees
Using a deep wash of Paynes Gray and your round brush, paint in the trees on the horizon.  Vary the heights of the trees to add interest.  Refer to the photo above for placement. Allow to dry.

Grasses:

Using a wash of Brunt Sienna and Yellow Ochre, paint the base of the grassy area moving from lighter shades in the back and moving to darker shades in the front.  While still wet, drop in a wash of Sepia in various locations for the base of the tall grasses.  While this area is still wet, use either the sharp edge of a credit card or a small palette knife and pull up some paint to indicate the grasses.  Allow to dry. 

Finishing touches:
Using a liner brush, add some additional grasses moving from small and short grasses in the horizon to taller grasses in the foreground.  Allow to dry.  Using a utility knife, scrape in some highlights in the tall grasses. 

Congratulations!

Happy Painting!
Karen

Thursday, March 2, 2017

One Color Painting

Quiet
5" x 7" watercolor painting
by Karen A. Cooke


The painting above was painted with only one color of paint - Paynes Gray.  The intensity of the color is regulated by the amount of water added to the paint and how the paint is layered on the paper.
Using this type of technique will help beginners understand the strength of color when water is added and how much water to use.  This technique also helps with learning how to layer the paint to achieve color.

Supplies Needed:
Watercolor paper (type and size of your choice)  - I used a 5" x 7" piece
Masking tape
Watercolor board
Brushes: round (size of your choice based on the size of your paper)
Paint:
  • Paynes Gray

Painting Instructions:
The only pencil line I used on this painting was the one for the horizon.  This helped keep me focused on the horizon and allowed me to keep the waterline/treeline consistent across the page. 

This painting was painted quickly wet on wet.

Sky:
Wet the sky area all the way down to the waterline.  Using a very pale wash of Paynes Gray, paint in areas of the sky.  Do not paint the entire sky, leave wide spaces of unpainted area.

Trees:
The trees are painted first with a pale wash of Paynes Gray, slightly deeper than the sky.  Paint the background trees from their tops down to the treeline.  While still damp, add in some deeper shades of Paynes Gray to indicate trees closer to the front.  Continue adding trees and painting deeper shades of Paynes Gray to the waterline.  Allow to dry.

Water/Reflection:
The reflection is painted using the same method used in the trees.  If you feel more comfortable,  rotate your paper and paint in the "normal" direction rather than painting "upside down."   Allow these trees to be "wavy" to indicate the reflection in the water.   Allow to dry. 

The water toward the front of the painting was painted in the same method as the sky.    This painting is basically a mirror image from the treeline to the sky and the treeline into the water. 

Finishing touches:
Using a liner brush, add a few trucks/branches in several locations.   Refer to the photo above. 

Congratulations!

Happy Painting!
Karen

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

"Island in the Lake" - Sky, Water and Reflections


Island on the Lake
9" x 12" watercolor painting
Karen A. Cooke


The painting above provides great practice for painting sky, water and reflections.  All elements of this painting are loosely painted with minimal amounts of detail.  The painting was also painted on a slight slant to allow the paint to flow on the paper.

Supplies Needed:
Watercolor paper (type and size of your choice)  - I used a 9" x 12" piece
Masking Tape
Watercolor board
Brushes: flat, liner and round (size of your choice based on the size of your paper)
Paint:
  • Cobalt Blue
  • Sepia
  • Payne's Gray
  • Cadmium Orange
  • Yellow Ocher
  • Sap Green
  • Hooker Green Deep

Painting Instructions:
Lightly sketch this painting on your paper.  This is not an involved sketch, simply drawn the horizon, the island and make exterior shapes of the trees. 

Sky:
Use a large round brush to paint the sky area.  Wet the sky from the top down to the horizon using clean water. Using a pale wash of Cadmium Orange drop in some color in various locations in the sky.  See above photo for location.  While this is still wet, paint in a wash of the Cobalt Blue, apply the paint working from the top of the painting down to the horizon .  However, do not completely cover the entire sky area.  Allow some white areas to remain.  Using a tissue or paper towel, lift some of the paint to create lighter areas in the sky for clouds, if needed.  Work around the island and trees.  Allow to dry.  

Water:
Deeper the wash of Cobalt Blue.  Continue using the round brush and paint in the water.  Again, do not complete cover the area, leave some spaces unpainted.  Add a light wash of Cadmium Orange in various locations in the water was well as wash of a deep brown mixed from the orange and green.  This will create the shadows of the island.  Refer to the photo above for placement.  The reflections closer to the island are painted with a mix of Payne's Gray and Cobalt Blue.  Paint this quickly while the water area is still wet.  Allow to dry.

Trees:
The trees are painted with a light wash of Sap Green and the deeper colors are added next working light to dark.  Mix Sap Green with Cobalt Blue and Hooker Green with Cobalt Blue and add the shadows.  In some locations, use only a deep Blue from Cobalt Blue and Payne's Gray.   Allow to dry.    Note:  Tree branches will be painted in a later step. 

Island and Rocks:

Using a pale wash of Payne's Gray, start painting the rocks and land areas of the island.  Drop in the blue and Sepia in various locations to create the land areas and the rocks.  Refer to the photo above for location. 

Tree Branches:
Using a liner brush, paint details of branches on various trees (not all of them)  with deep shades of the green.  Do not overdo....less is more.   Allow to dry.

Finishing touches:
Review your painting and add any shadows that may be needed for depth. 

Congratulations!

Happy Painting!
Karen



Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Jed's Barn - Painting a Winter Landscape

Jed's Barn
9" x 12" watercolor painting
by
Karen A. Cooke


Painting winter landscapes can and usually do involve painting snow.  Snow can be achieved with watercolor painting by simply painting shadows and leaving the other areas of the landscape  unpainted.  Sounds easy - but this can often be tricky.  In order to contour the ground, shadows and shapes need to be considered as well as intensity of color.  Shadows can be shades of blue or grays and even browns, depending on the object creating the shadow.  The painting above of the old barn is an example of a winter landscape.  The focal point of this painting is the red barn; however, the snowy landscape is a large factor in emphasizing the barn.

Let's paint!

The watercolor above was painted on  140 lb. cold press paper.   I did not use my usual preferred paper (Arches).  This paper is Strathmore.  This paper is a heavyweight paper suited for beginning watercolorists or for experimenting with new techniques.  It is less expensive than Arches paper  and does not allow for excessive working or lifting of color.  I always recommend a 140 lb. weight paper for beginners as it is easier to work the paint on the page.  A good student grade paper is less expensive and keeps the beginner from being as worried about the possibility of ruining an expensive piece of paper.   Use the brand and type of paper you prefer, can afford, and feel comfortable using.

Don't worry about ruining a piece of paper.  Feel free to explore and learn new techniques......after all - "it is only paper!"
Supplies Needed:
Watercolor paper (type and size of your choice)  - I used a 9" x 12" piece
Masking Tape
Watercolor board
Brushes: flat, liner and round (size of your choice based on the size of your paper)
Paint:
  • Cerulean Blue
  • Sepia
  • Payne's Gray
  • Van Dyke Brown
  • Alizarin Crimson

Painting Instructions:
I sketched this drawing on my watercolor paper. However, if you feel you may need to erase multiple times, you may want to drawn on a piece of sketch paper and transfer your completed sketch to the watercolor paper. I discuss how this can be accomplished in my blog of May 11, 2016.


As a reminder: Multiple erasures can damage watercolor paper and cause pooling of water as well as differences in the way the paint is absorbed into or on the paper. Deep sketch marks will show up in a finished painting, even if they are erased. Correct perspective is an important part of this painting. Confirm that you like the perspective that you have executed in your sketch before you start painting. A poorly executed sketch done in a hurry cannot be overcome no matter how great a job one does with the paint.

Sky:
Wet the sky from the top down to the horizon using clean water. Using a wash of Cerulean Blue, apply the paint working from the top of the painting down to the horizon.  Using a tissue or paper towel, lift some of the paint to create lighter areas in the sky for clouds.  As the wash begins to dry.  paint in the impression of trees in the distance using a mix of your blue paint and Payne's Gray.  Allow to dry.  

Note: 
Larger trees:   You will paint over the top of the trees you sketched with the sky color so that the sky will be smooth.  Since the trees are painted using a darker color than the sky, they will be painted after the sky is completely dry. 

Barn:
I painted the siding of the barn first and left the roof for last.  The wood siding is painted with Crimson and Payne's Gray. 

Prepare a wash of crimson, varying the intensity from a deep red to a pale red.  Using the photo above as an example, paint the siding of the barn varying the color intensity of the red in various locations.  While the red is still wet, drop in the Payne's Gray.  Allow these colors to blend. 

Note:  Deepen the shadows under the roof line on the side of the barn with a deep shade of Payne's Gray.  This is done while the paint is still wet so that there will be no transition line from the shadow to the side of the barn. 

Barn Roof:
The roof of the barn is covered in snow.  Therefore, only the shadows are painted to indicate areas where the snow is blanketing the roof.  Areas of the roof are old and missing.  Painting wet on wet and using a mix of Payne's Gray and Cerulean Blue, paint in shadows referencing the photo above for shadow placement.  Using a deep shade of Payne's Gray, paint the areas where the roof is broken and missing on the right hand side of the roof.  The areas of broken roof where the siding shows through on the side of the barn were painted when the siding shadows were painted.  Allow to dry. 

Snow - Land contour and shadows
Using a pale wash of Payne's Gray, paint the snow on the left hillside, deepening the shadows cast by the trees.  Referencing the photo above, paint the contours on the ground and around the barn using a pale wash of Payne's Gray and Cerulean Blue. 

Note:  The shadows closer to the bottom of the page are painted with a light wash of Cerulean Blue with the intensity deepening as one moves further away. 

Trees/Grasses: 
Using  a wash of Vandyke Brown paint the trees.  Deepen the color on the trunks of the trees in various locations with Sepia. 

Add some grasses showing through the snow in various locations near the barn and under the trees.

Allow to dry.

Finishing touches:
A few details can be added in the siding on the barn now that the paint is completely dry.

Use a liner brush and Payne's Gray,  paint in a few lines for the boards adding a few deeper areas where the boards are cracked.  Do not make this very detailed.  When the paint is completely dry, use a utility knife to scratch off the paint on the siding in a few areas for highlights. 

Look over your painting and paint any finishing details you would like to add. Then, sign your painting!

Congratulations!

Happy Painting!
Karen