Warm up landscape –

This is the perfect time of the year to PLAY with paints….

Using a photograph as my ‘jumping off’ point, I used this spontaneous watercolour/gouache exercise to warm up before my day’s painting.


Working on white watercolour paper, I wet the area above the horizon line, and then add juicy tube paint.    Note I am using a mix of watercolour and gouache.    Don’t worry about colours…allow yourself to play…this is all about warming up.


Leaving some dry white paper between the sky and horizon line,  I then add colour to the area beneath the horizon line.


I now add a much darker pigment on the horizon line.


After allowing the horizon line to dry, I then add Winsor & Newton designer Gouache Permanent White into the sky….allowing the paint to bleed (run).

At the same time, I darken areas to achieve more drama.    Remember this is playful exercise and any photograph is simply a ‘jumping off point’ rather than something to copy.   I have added some lighter blue – again to achieve drama and contrast. 


I now add naples yellow designer gouache into the sky to balance the naples yellow in the foreground.    The sky reflects directly upon the land.   Everything is interconnected. 


In the final frame, I lighten the sky area next to the horizon line, and add some details which indicate fields, and grasses.


Remember that working over old sketches, and keeping sketch books are both valuable ways to warm up and hone observational skills. 

And of course we do need a magical hummingbird for this very cold February morning.   A sign of things to come in the not too distant future.


A Bientôt.

11 thoughts on “Warm up landscape –

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