I am currently working on two (5′ x 4′) canvases, and so many of the watercolours I am painting at the moment are ideas that might be incorporated into the large paintings.
In this watercolour of a Thistle with Hummingbird, using strong vibrant watercolour, my goal is to express a moment in time…almost as if I just looked up and for one beautiful second my eye spots the movement of the hummingbird, and I hear the humming, from which it was named.
As is the case with most of my watercolours, this is painted very quickly.
I drop some juicy paint onto a dry white surface, and then add into the wet area, some Alizirin Crimson and Dioxazine Violet.
With a small brush I indicate some of the thistle fonds and stem…pulling out from the wet area.
I now apply water to part of the surrounding area (negative space), being careful not to go right up next to the flower. I want to keep the area immediately surrounding the flower as dry white paper.
I then drop into the wet area some Cadmium Orange and Opera Rose.
At the same time, always working the whole picture, I add some of those colours into the flower area.
To achieve the lovely fuzzy light right next to the flower I use a tiny amount of Designer Gouache, permanent white.
You can see in this close up, that I am allowing the colours to bleed and do their own thing. As I often say about this kind of watercolour painting, it’s an excellent lesson about letting go of control:)
I now add the hummingbird. It’s vital that the flower and hummingbird are connected…and not separate entities! Remember all of life is interconnected.
I have used the same colours in the flower for the hummingbird with the addition of some Cobalt Turquoise Blue Light and Green Gold.