Tag: grasses

Tribute

This wet-in-wet is drawn from imagination and inspiration by the Dutch watercolorist Edo Hannema. I just love his mastery of water and color and wet paper! There is a peaceful quality to his paintings of the Dutch landscape.

Painting like this demands thought and deliberation and patience. Timing is also critical. Painting wet-in-wet requires risks and experience. Too wet, everything just blurs. Paint wet paint which is wetter than the still damp colors result in blooms which can destroy a painting in now time. The rule is drier paint into wet paint – that on your brush must be drier than the stuff on the paper. Blot your brush if in doubt.

Oops! Just noticed that the horizon is dead center . . . compositional error! And that big green blob is also a mistake – tried to fix it – but since this is time for true confessions, I may as well own up. 😉

This is one of my more successful wet-in-wet paintings. Usually there is a big cauliflower bloom somewhere – sometimes I can hide it, but it feels really good not to have one this time! Remembering the trick of drier onto wetter was a good thing.

For the first time, I am painting on 300# paper. This is Kilimanjaro CP from Cheap Joe’s. With such a heavy paper, lots of water can be used. 140# warps but this stayed virtually flat. I like this paper a lot – certainly will be getting more of it.

Under the Summer Sky

As summer fades away, the fires are burning along the west coast, and the clarity of the air has gone murky. This is when I dream of being somewhere along a river, with sun, blue skies, flowers and birds. I’m a country girl at heart, stuck in suburbia! (But there are advantages of the ‘burbs, too.)

I used Arches Rough 12×16 140# paper. The texture is not as smooth as what CP or HP provide. There is a lot more “tooth” which is great for dry brush and texture, such as in the foreground grasses and middle ground trees. I used one of my hake brushes for the general grass shapes, and a larger, harder brush for the sky. Before I painted any large area, I used the hake brush with clear water, letting it soak in a bit to help the paint to spread more easily on this rough paper.

In general, I am pleased with this painting. DOF works fairly well. I put in a building, too! For me, the most flawed area is the squared-off top of a tree to the left of the building – maybe I will go in later to correct it, but for now, I’ll let it be, cuz it’s time for a nap!

Summer on Mt. Diablo

The end of summer and the brilliant greens of summer fade to brown and beige . . .

Here, I just wanted to make a light painting with simple washes. Usually I go for really intense colors, and it took a bit of work to get the sky light, as well as keep the colors of the distant mountains and grasses paler than my normal approach. The sky was easiest as I just blotted up my colors with tissue and used a lightly damp brush.

I’m rather pleased with the results, I must say.

The Orchard

This is by far the painting which took the most time to produce.  There was – gasp! – actual forethought and planning done.  Can you believe it?  Does that mean I’m progressing or something?!?

Anyway, what I did was consider what I wanted to see.  I also thought about some things I have observed other watercolorists do, namely underpainting.  I also have been reading and seeing many painters lay out light colors, in a general way, move into medium washes with perhaps more detail, darker areas, and finally the details.  This is what I did, but, before painting, I put down a lot of frisket in the shape of dots.  Then, the first pale layer of wash.  Between the third and fourth photos, I did more frisket.  Dots again, but I also used a toothbrush for splatter, and drew lines over the green washes, to retain colors.  Then the fourth layer.  At that point I stopped for the night.

This morning, I rather knew what I wanted to do.  I laid down a pale wash over the grassy areas of quinacridone gold and sap green.  It was necessary to pull the grasses together.  Finally, I removed the frisket and did a bunch of details complete the painting.  Total time – about 5 hours!  All of it was fun, and not a lot of frustration.  I think because I took time, and because I am less “serious” about my stuff (knowing it won’t be what I envision) really helps.

Below, a gallery of the steps I took in the painting, if you are interested in the process.

 

Grasses in Water

I really liked the reference photo I had for this painting.  It was hard to really see at first – kind of busy with vertical and horizontal / diagonal lines.  And then it came into focus.  In retrospect, I think using frisket for the plants would have made them stand out a bit more, but in the photo they were a very pale wheat color without a lot of contrast.  I made them more contrasty and added darker browns and some greens for a better (I think) effect.

Water is a tricky subject – until you look at it a bit.  Flowing water is a series of colored shapes.  Reflections have some rules, but I have to re-read about those.  I am not too sure how I would express ocean waves crashing on the shore at this point, but flat water with a few ripples seems easier each time I attempt it.