Sunday, April 28, 2013

Pour It On!

Let's learn a new technique!

In addition to brushing on a wash, the paint can be poured! The following blog entries will show how to "pour on" a watercolor background wash.

The painting above of a dogwood bloom is an excellent subject for a pouring technique.

The dogwood was drawn with minimal details and then the white/lighter areas are masked. See the example below.

Once the sketch is complete and the desired areas masked and dry, prepare a wash of the following colors in small cups. Individual size applesauce cups are wonderful for this project. Make a wash using the following colors:

Lemon Yellow
Windsor Blue

See the photo below with the prepared paints. These are the only 3 colors that will be needed for the background as the colors will blend to make greens, etc.

Prepare your painting surface. I use the lid of my watercolor palette to catch excess paint as well as placing several layers of paper towels under my paper.

Once your surface is prepared, start by pouring the yellow first diagonally moving from bottom to top and right to left. Then pour the red and pour the blue last. After each pour, pick up the paper and move the color around.

See the photos below for a step by step application of the colors.

Once you are satisfied with the colors, remove the painting and place on clean paper towels to dry.

You've learned how to "pour it on!" This is an excellent method for adding background to large areas and mixing colors on the paper. This technique can be used for large areas of water (such as an ocean or lake), skies, and grass/tree backgrounds. Several shades of the same color can be used for a sky or body of water. Always remember to use the lightest color first and use care when pouring the paint so that the light paint is not covered entirely by the darker colors.

Next blog, we'll work on the dogwood bloom.

Happy Painting!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Wild Bouquet

Wild flowers are springing up everywhere! My backyard is a field of wild least, it was until my husband mowed the lawn. I was able to take the photo above before the mower came through.

So, I decided to do a quick painting of bouquet of violets. I actually did pick some with longer stems and put them in a small vase to enjoy for a little while. Now, the painting will last a little longer.

I wanted an abstract painting with lots of color and flow and little detail. Do not sketch your flowers......let the paint "draw" the painting for you.

To achieve this result, I started with applying clean water with a large flat brush on the entire piece of watercolor paper, I allowed this to dry just until the paper was no longer shiny.

While the paper was drying, I prepared a wash of the following color paints:

-Indian Yellow
-Windsor Blue
-Ultramarine Blue
-Sap Green
-Purple made from mixing Crimson, Windsor Blue, and Ultramarine Blue

Using a large round brush, I dropped the paint onto the wet paper and allowed it to run. Using a mix of the reds, blues, and my purple, I used the shapes that formed when I dropped the paint onto the paper to make my flowers. I helped the shapes out just a little by adding some additional paint in places to create the shapes of the petals. Leave some areas white (unpainted).

Drop in some sap green for the leaves outside the shapes of the flowers and in several spaces in the background

When the flowers are nearly dry, drop in the yellow for the center of the violets...allow this to blend into the petals.

When the flowers and leaves are dry, use a mix of Sap Green, Ultramarine and Sepia to paint in a new stems.

This style of painting is fun and quick to create. It also allows for lots of interesting shapes and colors. Be creative - don't strive for perfection; simply enjoy the colors and the flow of the as spontaneous as the wild flowers that spring up overnight and bring such delight!

Make your wild flowers last - even after the lawn has been mowed! Paint a bouquet of wild flowers!

Happy Painting!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Cades Cove Grist Mill - The Finishing Touches

The mill, water wheel, water run and the walkway are finished. Now to paint the background trees, foreground grasses , the fence and to add any finishing details that are needed.

Prepare a wash of the following colors for the tree branches and trunks:

-Burnt Umber
-Payne's Gray

Using a round brush, paint in the tree trunks and branches using wet on dry. This can be done freehand; or if you feel more comfortable, lightly pencil in the location of the tree trunks and branches. I used a #4 rounds brush for the trunks and larger branches and then a liner brush for the small branches.

While this dries, prepare a very diluted wash of Burnt Umber and Sepia for the fence posts. Using a #6 round brush, paint the posts using a wet on wet technique. Wet the fence posts with clean water and then paint using the prepared wash. Drop in Burnt Umber and Sepia to deepen some areas for shadows and imperfections in the wood. Allow to dry.

When the tree branches and trunks are dry, use a dry sea sponge and lightly sponge in some areas of foliage using the following colors:

-Lemon Yellow
-Sap Green
-Wash of Sap Green and Ultramarine

Vary the colors of the foliage using light and dark to show areas of sunshine and shadow. Sponge across some of the branches.

Using a light touch and lighter colors, sponge in the foreground grasses.

Last Minutes Details:
Allow the painting to dry. Check any areas that you feel may need additional details; such as the logs or the fence. Add any details you feel are needed.

Congratulations! Sign your name - you grist mill is complete!

Until next blog - Happy Painting!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Grist Mill - Painting the Water Wheel

Painting the water wheel, window shutters and the small porch over the door as well as adding shadows is our next step.

Prepare a wash of the following colors:

-Burnt Umber
-Payne's Gray

Painting the Water Wheel:
Wet the water wheel with clean water. Add the above prepared colors placing the darker shades in the shaded areas. After this paint dries, go back and deepen the shaded areas to indicate the spokes of the wheel.

Painting the Shutters, Porch, and Water Flume:
While this paint dries, add the finishing touches to the window shutters and the small porch. Using a dry brush and Burnt Umber, add grain lines to the water flume.

Painting the Shadows:
After the water wheel is dry, wet the part of the building surrounding the water wheel and drop in some Burnt Umber to indicate the areas of the building wet from the splashing water. Allow to dry.

Next blog, we will finish our painting - adding the details to the trees and our mill.

Until then - Happy Painting!