53. Watercolor Pencil Studies

Even though I am trying to be a good patient and wear my splints all the time, it just isn’t possible.  I am still limping around, too, so I am not doing much hiking as my knee still hurts from the fall.  Rather, I am on the patio in the warm afternoon sun, away from those dangerous dogs!  I had a few pictures, a bit of imagination, and some watercolor pencils.  I decided to try them out in some rather different ways to learn how to better use them.

Above is a Black Phoebe.  They live in the trees around here.  Their feathers are darker om the head, and their faces are not quite so fat.  I tried to get in line detail and then used a fine  brush.  Darkest blacks were from an ink brush.

Next, just a simple Japanese maple leaf, no lines, only pencil and water.  I laid it on pretty thick, but it is still paler than what I would like to see.

Finally, Queen Anne’s Lace.  Here I wanted to draw into negative space, so what better subject than white flowers?  I used ink, and for the paler flowers in the background, I dipped my brush in water and took color off the pencil tips before painting onto the paper.

24.3 Village Windows (I’m Done!)

This is the third layer of Village Windows, and the last.  It couldn’t go much further from here.  The big surprise came when I added water to the sky.  Soooooo much purple!

And after that, I added more color pencil and more water, and finally more iron gall ink with my dip pen.  I kept to my two things – the ink, the layers of pencils.  I added colors as I went, just exploring.  I felt that it was a good thing to do as this is really the first picture I have ever done with watercolor pencils.  I have the Faber-Castell Albrecht Durer ones, with 60 colors.

Dimension is not something I am really good at – perspective.  Things get cattywumpus.  In fact, per my eye doctor, I have no depth perception at all, and may have never had it in the normal sense that most people have.  Even when I was 18 I was told that.  Good?  Bad?  I manage – I don’t wander around banging off the wall!

And here is the final picture.  Parts work, parts don’t.  Watercolor pencils are really interesting, just as is the iron gall ink.  As an experiment in a new media altogether, I rather enjoyed the experience.  I did learn a bit in the process, which was the point – how and what to do with watercolor pencils?  I couldn’t write a dissertation on it.  I can tell you it was a lot of fun, and I know I will revisit them in the future.

24.1 and 24.2 Village Windows

Here is yesterday’s first layer of watercolor pencil, now “watercolored”.  I tried to follow the lines of the pencil.

Here is the second layer of watercolor pencil, with a little bit more detail.  The sky was done with about 4 or 5 colors, layered down with a blue, some white, some grey.  The roofs are an orange and a brown and a black.

As you can see, I also colored in the windows and am trying to add texture to the tiled roofs.  Some green, too, for the foliage in front.  After this, I then added water.  Once more, I followed the lines, such in the roofs.  The space on the lower right is a bit of a problem.  I think it needs something, but have no idea at this point.  Maybe a cafe awning so we can a shot of espresso?

As I have never used watercolor pencils for any complete picture, my cunningly brilliant plan is to simply layer color, then use water.  As you can see, there is some bleeding.  Most interesting to me is the sky – in the center the little bleeds are rather interesting.  In the windows, I also did some lifting of color with a dry brush to lighten the glass, as a reflection or to enhance a shadow.  The iron gall ink is beginning to blur into the colors.

I have no idea how many layers I will end up with, but I am going to try to do glazes / layers to represent shadow and form.  No idea how successful this will be!

24.1. Village Windows

Well, I don’t live in an interesting old village, but I think I could quite happily.  Suburbia just doesn’t make it when it comes to interesting lines, stones, and such.  Macadam and stucco and neatly cropped lawns are my daily world, so I always have to run off someplace else!  Not that suburbia doesn’t have its good points, like modern plumbing and electricity, but it’s not that visually exciting.

Okay, so I got our my Faber-Castell watercolor pencils.  I have a tin of 60 that I have been meaning to try on a serious level.  So, here is the first layer.  I used iron gall ink on a dip pen for the lines, and then just a quick scribble of pencils to lay down the basic colors.  Next, I will wet the pencils and let it dry.  Then, off to work. Bye!