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This is an example of what a goauche resist looks like before I paint into it. I took this one beyond and became very intricate in my drawing like some of the resists I’ve done of race horses. I waited some time before painting into this one because I liked the original black and white resist. My mind still argues with me as to whether I should have added color. I even almost threw this one away because I became so frustrated with it.  There was so much gray scale to this one that, when I added the watercolor, I could not see the image any farthur back than about six feet and that bothered me. Then, I said to myself , “go back in with white for the shack and see if you can pop it some”. That worked. It brightened up the colors I’d chosen and popped the image of the shack enough that it gave it an eerie time of day, maybe dusk. Sometimes it is just practicing enough with your techniques to bring something around.  There are many artists who resort to other mediums,  like collage and pastels, to bring something back to life. Sometimes it is better not to give up.  Sometimes you just have to walk away and move on. This time, I think it worked to change the plan.


  1. Wonderful!

  2. Leslie, I like both of these sketches. The far wall, window and tree trunk is where my eye goes first on the black/white (top). On the one with the paint added my eye travels over the whole composition then settles on the far window and tree trunk. Interesting project!

    • I agree with you about the window and the tree trunk. It is kind of where the dog’s head is looking, too. Thank you so much!

  3. Leslie I never give up or walk away… I think the white worked very well here.

    • It has happened about three times with me. The rescue might have been possible, but perhaps was beyond my ability to “see”, at the time. But I agree with you… “never give up”. Thank you, Doron. 🙂

      • Leslie pleasure have a great weekend 🙂

  4. This is fantastic Leslie !

    • Thank you, Tim. This image made me think of you and your forestry blog. I found the shack image in a photo reference book for artists and the dog I added freehand….. I know the dog is heavier than yours, but you get what I mean, the “forester”, back woodsman, dog person kind of scene going on. You and what you have shared on your blog are never far from my mind when I watch the news and there is some forest fire they are reporting on.

      • I would be quite comfy in your painting. The light filtering through the trees feels just right. I love the vintage feel I get from it. I’ve seen plenty of cabins just like it out in the woods.

        So Cal has had most of the fires lately, but we’re getting a round of thunderstorms now. Hopefully, some rain will come with it.

      • Thank you, Tim.I do hope you get that rain!

  5. I love looking at the difference with the colors you added. Blessings to you, Leslie…

  6. I like the technique in your final result – and I love the uncertainty you describe in your approach. I take great heart from what Milton Glaser says about our best work happening in our place of uncertainty and I think this posting bears this out. When you are clear on when to park the work and when to push on – you will be engaged in other issues that will add an element of thrill to your work. As always your experimental approach is a source of inspiration to me.

    This is a delightful scene, full of charming metaphors, for me anyway. And I love the way you have used this way of working to describe the leaves in the tree.

    Top Stuff my friend

    • Oh my gosh, I agree with Milton Glaser. Something happens when decisions have to be made. Thank you, so much Stephen. 🙂

  7. What an absolutely “WOW!” piece, Leslie. I love both versions too, but think the color was brilliant as a choice. Love that you added in the tree shadow on the side of the cabin too. I was instantly thinking of Tom Sawyer for some reason!

    • Oh, thank you for that, Sherry, about Tom Sawyer! I can see it, now, too. I really appreciate when other artists share what they see.

  8. I like this and your tenacity, you accomplished bringing your vision out. Wonderful painting, the white worked giving us a beautiful play with light.

  9. Enjoy seeing the comparison between the b&w version and the color version. The color version catches my eye quickly with drama; the b&w has interesting subtleties.

    • Hi Joy,

      I have enjoyed following your watercolor work. So colorful! Thank you for this comment. The color version is growing on me…. I think it did need the color… See? One day I don’t know and the next few days that feeling changes..

  10. could you explain gouache resist? I have used it but not this way.

  11. Amazing details, spectacular to look at Leslie!

  12. I am in awe at your patience… This is amazing!

  13. I like both versions very much. And I’m glad you didn’t throw out the B&W or give up. I like that you added color to the black and white. The B&W looks like an etching but with the color it becomes warm and inviting. I agree with Isabelle, you are very patient. 🙂

    • It’s grown on me, now. I am glad I added the color. I think I just go through periods of time where I think something too much instead of just keep going with the feel….. Thinking is just sometimes a real disaster! 🙂 Thank you!

  14. I think you were successful with whitening the house. I wonder what that dog is thinking though.

    • Ha! I think he is waiting for his best friend to walk out the door! 🙂 I’m glad it makes the viewer think about what that dog might be thinking… I guess there could be all kinds of stories. Thank you for that, Ruth!

  15. This is really great Leslie! ❤️

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  1. […] like to try this technique, I have described the process here. I have used this technique for a landscape, animals, and still life but had not tried a human portrait. I used a really interesting book […]

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