Tag Archives: wins or & newton

Tutorial 8. Wet brush no paint.

In this short video, I load my big brush with juicy paint, and then making sure to remove all paint from the brush, I use the clean wet brush to pull out the colour.

I am working on a dry surface, and by using this technique, I am able to avoid muddiness, which is the enemy of all water-colour painters:)

Once again I can’t stress how important it is to have a minimum of four pots of clean water always at hand.

A Bientôt

Tutorial 6 – Moving colour around the painting.

Frame 1.

I am using another calla lily for this demonstration, and once again will be focusing on the negative space, and the importance of moving colour around a painting. 

I am working on a white surface, and have sketched out the lily using a watercolour pencil.     By adding a little water to the pencil mark, the line bleeds.

I then apply juicy paint around the lily, and then immediately start pulling the colour to the edge of the paper using a clean, wet brush.  It is important to note that several pots of clean water should be available at all times.

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Frame 2.

In this frame I have covered all of the negative space, using a mix of Winsor & Newton Cotman series – Burnt Umber, Turquoise Blue and Dioxazine Violet.     Any colours can be used.

In an ideal world it’s best to work on two or three images at one time.      When you get to the point with one image where you don’t know what to do next….do nothing, and move onto the next one.    By the time you return to the original image, the answers will  be there for you.

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Frame 3.

The only tool I use other than a brush, is a knife.    In this frame after the paint has dried a little, I have scraped out areas of the negative space.      This breaks up the area, and at the same time brings back some light areas, which help to balance the image.  A credit card also works quite well.

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Frame 4.

I now begin to add small amounts of colour to the lily.    I am using Winsor & Newton Green Gold, plus some of the turquoise which is in the background.  I am also using Cotman series, Cadmium Orange and burnt sienna.     Moving colour around the image brings balance and a sense of integration.

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Frame 5.

In this final frame, I have applied some Gold Green, Turqoise and Cadmium Orange to the areas where I have scraped out with the knife.    As I work any image, whether a small watercolour or a huge oil painting,  I am always aware of the whole, and am constantly moving colour around to achieve a sense of balance in the overall composition.

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‘Play is the highest form of research’   Albert Einstein. 

More about some basic materials tomorrow.

A Bientôt

Tutorial 2. The power of negative space.

For this second tutorial, I am using a Calla Lily as my model.    I have always loved its exquisite form, and have used it for many years as both symbolic and decorative imagery in my paintings.      

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It is key to train the eye to observe both the subject and the negative space, that which surrounds the subject.    Often we try so hard to make something happen…..to paint a perfect (in this case) calla lily, or solve an ongoing problem.     When what we need to do is observe and record the negative space, which surrounds the subject, and voila…the answer is revealed. 

In Frame 1.  Working on white paper, I have sketched the calla lilly using a neutral colour (yellow ochre) however, if you wish to use a pencil, brush, felt tip pen, that’s fine.    Note that after sketching the form, I immediately begin to add colour into the surrounding area – the negative space.   I am using a mix of burnt sienna and prussian blue. 

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 Frame 2.   I continue to add the mix of Prussian Blue and Burnt sienna into the negative space, which automatically reveals the lily.  Note that I am working on a dry surface.      To manipulate the paint, I use one of the most important techniques in watercolour painting.     With a clean, wet brush I pull the paint out to the edge of the paper.    This gives an element of control, and helps to avoid muddiness….the enemy of all watercolour painters. 

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Frame 3.   As I pull out the colour with my clean, wet brush….I am able to bleed more colour into the wet background.   I bleed in some violet and turquoise, and at the same time use a kitchen knife to scrape out some of the colour.    This gives a sense of movement and breaks up the density of the negative space. 

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Frame 4.  In this image, using some of the same colour that is in the background, I begin to indicate the shadows.    Very little pigment is used for this.     The white paper, in this instance, becomes the whites in the image.     In other words I leave areas that I want to stay white, completely dry. 

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Frame 5.   Now I begin to strengthen the shadows and build up the colour in the Lily.   Remember, any area I want to keep completely white, I keep as dry white paper.      It is important to note, that I take the same colours I have used in the background to make up the shadows…..this is because, everything reflects upon everything else, and all things are connected.    It will also help to give the image a sense of balance and harmony. 

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Frame 6.   I like drama in my paintings, and so I am strengthening the shadows using pigments that are in the background.   By doing this, the white of the lily becomes more pronounced….again giving a sense of drama.     I

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For this image, I have used Winsor & Newton, Cotman series – Burnt sienna, Prussian Blue, Dioxazine Violet, Turquoise blue, cadmium orange, and Winsor & Newton artist’s great Green Gold (a pigment I highly recommend) 

I  used an ordinary kitchen knife to scrape out the paint.    Cutting off the corner of a credit card works very well.    Probably the best use for any credit card:)

Next week, I hope to  show some one minute videos, which might help you with some of these techniques and also talk about my book The Apple Exercise which incorporates all the different elements which will be shown in these tutorials. 

The Apple Exercise, is available through the products page on my website at http://www.janetweightreed.co.uk

A Bientôt

For now wishing everyone a lovely weekend. 

A Bientôt