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Category Archives: Watercolors

 

I recently tried a new paper, 140lb Khadi Rough. The two paintings, above, are my first attempts to feel the paper and explore how it took the watercolor. It is very soft. Large areas of liquid friskit will damage the surface but I have used it on small areas with no problem. The paper remains wet for a long time, so I had two paintings going at a time. While one was drying, I’d work on the other. I love the texture of the paper and the imperfections in it. There are bumps and particles that appear throughout as I paint. Once a layer dries, I can lift most colors. by scrubbing back with sponge or bristle brush. The paintings look soft and have a glow. I feel like I can complete a painting faster on this paper. The color is more vibrant from the beginning.

 

The next two paintings are much larger. To begin each of these paintings, I painted in gray scale with Paynes gray to establish values. I spritzed each gray scale painting with water to blur some of the edges. I then painted on top of the gray scale. In the bottom painting, I added white gouache glazes to the background and sponged where I wanted to lift some of the mist.

I am sold on this paper. I do not know if it will hold up to the abuses of gouache resist or collaging but will try both techniques on it. Arches may be the better choice for those techniques. I know I could use ink, elegant writer and gesso techniques with this paper.

Thank you to wet canvas for the photo references for the horses and cat.

 

 

 

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Heather Terrill

Joyce Racine4

Kay Byerley4

Tammy Enrietto3

The above paintings were created by artists who just completed my Creative Challenge class. Each week we study different elements of design and composition. We always begin by learning about creating a center of interest and where best to place it on the format. We discuss that composition is the way in which we design the formats of our paintings. We learn ways in which to attract our viewer’s attention. We learn how to divide space and create contrast that is eye catching and not boring. We learn that paintings that include too much are difficult to read as well as the painting that does not have enough value contrast. We learn how to arrange the elements in our paintings in ways that are interesting and not boring. If you would like to view the rest of the paintings this class created you can scroll to the top of the page and click on the page that says, “Creative Challenge: Spring 2018” or click here.

Thank you to the students who gave their permission to share their paintings here.

 

Cynthia Heniser

Linda Wiegman

I just finished a Beginning Drawing class. The students in this class worked so hard and improved so much. Everyone did their homework and that makes a big difference. They began the class by learning to turn off their left brains and work with the feeling side of the brain. They drew with one continuous line for a week and a half. Above, the top drawing is a portrait drawn blind with one continuous line. The portrait below it was also drawn with one continuous line but while looking at the paper and model.

Diana Adkins2

They learned how to see and draw negative space in order to describe a positive shape.

Darlene Gensic5

They learned perspective.

Pamela Ropek2

They learned to grid a photo reference.

John Glasgow4

Cynthia Heniser3

They learn to make marks and find three values to describe their subjects.

Emily Simpson

Linda Wiegman5

They learned to draw self portraits.

If you would like to view more of their work click here.

You can also scroll to the top of this page and click on Beginning Drawing: Spring 2018.

I also completed a session in Advanced Watercolor.

Beth Akey3

Janet Heffley4

Nancy Longmate

Judy Notestine

Jan Reche4

Above are examples of paintings created by watercolor artists in the Advanced Watercolor class. I serve only as a mentor or to introduce a new paper or technique if I find one. There is a critique session at the end of every class. The artists are asked to be creative and to try to finish 3 paintings in a six week period of time. If you would like to view all of their work you can scroll to the top of the page and click on Advanced Watercolor: Winter 2018 or click here.

Thank you to all my students for sharing their work here!

This is my second attempt of the Granddaughters at our favorite swimming place, Jury Pool. I wanted to try and capture the bright light and the feel of being at the pool in the summer. Also wanted to try and capture the landscape of the pool, people, umbrellas and building in the background. Before my advanced class left for our winter break, I asked them to create a painting with three or more people in it. They will share this painting when we start up in February.

 

The above watercolor sketch was done as a demo for painting little people in my landscape and beginning classes this fall.

I just finished teaching our fall session of Beginning Watercolor.

Kay Byerley4

Lizzy Smith3

The first thing we worked on was learning wet-in-wet, wet on dry and dry-brushing strokes. We practiced brushstrokes and painted a back-lit scene for our first assignment.

Lizzy Smith

Carole Smith2

We talked about ways to create texture and foliage and trees. We also discussed greens and adding other colors to them.

Jennifer Howey3

Kay Byerley3

We discussed ways to create skies, clouds and that similar washes could be used to create water.  Each student created a large sky or a large foreground painting.

Carole Smith4

We talked about how to paint buildings and learned to grid reference photo and size our format and grid it. This helped us to get the perspective correct on the buildings.

Jennifer Howey

The fifth week we talked about color combinations and specific colors that fell in either the light, medium or dark tonal ranges.

Carole Smith5

We finished by learning how to paint little people into our landscapes.

Thank you to all students who shared their paintings here. If you would like to see all their paintings click here. You can also scroll to the top of the page and click on Student Art: Beginning Watercolor.

Ruth Karau3

Henn Laidroo2

Cindy Guzik2

The above three paintings were created by artists in the Advanced Watercolor class this session. I chose them because they fit the season. The students who work in this class have completed all the classes I offer in watercolor and wish to continue working as a group. They must finish three paintings in a six week session. They work on individual projects of their own choice. If  you would like to view all of their work click here  or scroll to the top and click on session 2 Advanced Watercolor.

The Watercolor Landscape class also ended this week.

Tammy Enrietto2

We studied composition and where to place a center of interest.

Carol Spallone

We studied division of space and value contrast.

Meghan Mills5

We painted either a big sky painting or large foreground painting.

Kara Morris 3

We created a painting on a grunge background and discussed the benefits of using the technique for certain subject material.

Janet Nichols2

We learned to paint little people.

If you would like to view all the art work from landscape class click here. 

You can also click by scrolling to the top of the page and clicking on Watercolor Landscape.

Thank you to all the students who allow me to post their art here.

I  just completed two more classes this week. The first to finish up is a new class offering. It is titled Advanced Watercolor and is open to students who have taken all of the other watercolor classes that are offered at least once. Each student is given goal sheets to complete on each painting. They are to set a goal to complete 3 paintings in the six week period. Many of these students have already been completing a painting a week. This offers them more time to work on larger works or works that are more involved or have mixed media techniques that require more time. There are no specific assignments and the artist can explore techniques they have already learned or new ones. There is a sharing session and group critique at the end of each class session. I am there to mentor, answer questions, or demonstrate when a student needs to see a technique done again. Some students work beyond my expertise and I am just there to encourage.

One student, in this session, made a book of watercolor portraits of witches. Below are some of the witches she included in her book:

Marilyn Bultemeier2

Marilyn Bultemeier3

Marilyn Bultemeier5

Some students worked on painting using negative space, Some used collage in their work while another experimented with painting on watercolor canvas. One student chose to study rock and water and how to best paint them. Another student is writing and illustrating a children’s book and yet another did a gouache resist. If you would like to view all 40 of their paintings click here.

The other class that ended was Beginning Drawing.

We began by drawing in continuous line both blind and looking. I spoke of cross contours in their work and how they should be included to show the shape of objects.

Here is a self portrait using  blind continuous line and cross contour:

Dennis Foote

We learned about negative space and how to look for those shapes that help to complete a drawing:

Heather Terrill3

We studied perspective:

Chris Petersen2

We learned about value and making different marks to create interest in our drawings. We practiced value by studying the value changes in a set of photographed eyes and also by cutting a picture in different shapes. This helped to get our mind off of drawing a complete drawing at once while we practiced making value marks.

Alison Metzger6

Sydney Salway5

We gridded photos and learned how to enlarge the photo on our drawing paper so that it would have the right proportions to grid properly:

Heather Terrill7

Everyone worked on drawing their self portrait:

Alison Metzger7

We worked on still life in class and at home:

Sydney Salway

Chris Petersen6

If you would like to view all their drawings click here.

Thank you to all the students who continue to allow me to post their work here.

 

Every year the Granddaughters and I head for Jury Pool. This painting was painted from a photo I took two years ago and features the orange and green slides. I have another started that has the pool in the background with numerous little people enjoying a hot summer day poolside. No special technique was used with this painting. I did liquid frisket some of the small design areas on the bathing suits and some of the bolts on the slides.

The above painting is of a basket/hat vendor in Mexico. About ten years ago I took a trip to a resort on the coast and watched as these vendors strolled up and down the beaches looking like gigantic clumps of baskets.

I began this painting by painting monochromatically in paynes gray. I then washed in splatters of water and allowed that value painting to run, tilting the board this way and that. I did not wash any white gouache into this and just painted the scene. After that, I added two figures and a bird to create more interest. The figures and the bird are cut out of a magazine and glued on using acrylic matte medium and water mixture.

 

 

The paintings, above, are gouache resists. It is a process involving the use of ink, white gouache and watercolor. I enjoy experimenting with all sorts of images when I create these. They all turn out different. If you would like to try this I have a tutorial here.

My Grandchildren have been back and forth this summer sharing all sorts of activities with me. This summer I taught them how to grid a portrait from a photo reference, size their format for proper dimensions and grid their watercolor paper to help them draw their Dad’s.

The following is what they came up with.

9 year old

The photo reference for the above portrait was from a Christmas photo.

10 year old

The above photo is the same Dad as the 9 year old’s but at a recent rock concert (making a funny face).

11 year old

Photo taken at rock concert.

I was amazed how easily they caught on to gridding and how happy they were when they saw they could see where to put their drawing lines in relation to the grid lines. They needed very little help from me. Noses and mouths were what they needed help with, but not much. We used a very simple grid and  divided the paper into 9 sections. I have described how to do this in this post. It was a great exercise in math. They were able to see how math can be important in everyday activities. Children soak things like this up so quickly!

 

Laura Butchko

Kara Morris3

Jim Wulpi5

 

Jan Reche

Diana Ringer2

Linda Flatley2

The above paintings are just a few from the spring classes in watercolor this year.

The beginning class learns about their supplies, basic techniques in application such as wet-in-wet, wet on dry and dry brushing. They learn about color combinations and value, texture and techniques to enhance texture. They learn to use masking fluid. We talk about things we need to be concerned with when painting trees, clouds, buildings and little people. If you would like to view more of the Beginning Watercolor  paintings,  there is a temporary gallery set up here.

The Watercolor Plus class worked on six different mixed media approaches with watercolor. They painted on masa paper. They worked with ink and watercolor and chose all sorts of different techniques with ink. One example using ink might be this technique. They used citrasolv collage and watercolor. They used white gouache to glaze a painting. They did a gouache resist.  Everyone painted on a textured gesso surface they created.

If you would like to view a gallery of the  Watercolor Plus class paintings click here.

Thank you to all my students who attend my classes and share their art here!