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by Nancy Longmate



I am bound and determined to learn the technique that Carol King shared on her blog post here. She learned this technique in a workshop she took from Tim Saternow.

The above two paintings are the result of my friend, Nancy Longmate, and my first attempts. It did not go so well.  She feels like she did not splatter enough and I feel as though I splattered too dark and could not soften the splatters down enough.  We refuse to give up. We both have our second attempts started and will post them when they are done.

Meanwhile, I’ll talk you through the steps I did on this one.



We were to create a monochromatic painting in the first step. I used payne’s grey. You can use any color you wish for this phase. Make sure it gets dark enough to explore all value ranges.



Once the painting is dry, drip copious amounts of water with a two inch flat brush onto the surface of the monochromatic study and allow it to dry.  I placed the painting on the floor and dripped onto the surface while standing above it.



The third step is to drip a diluted warm color and a diluted cool color onto the surface of the painting. I chose burnt sienna and payne’s grey I think it would have been best if I stopped here with the dripping. The drips would have read better had I diluted the colors more, too.  This is a bit dark for the splatter phase. I’m guessing!  Anyway, I made the mistake of splattering again.  I did this by standing above the painting and dripping the colors with a two inch flat brush. Nancy felt she did not splatter enough.



This is what it looked like before I began the finishing process. Like I said, I think I splattered too dark and should have diluted my warm and cool colors more.



After the splattered painting dries, begin to add some cool and warm colors and soften the drips where it is needed. The above painting is what I came up with.

I will be doing more of these. I think it is an excellent way to practice value study. It also satisfies my interest in being able to create something beyond copying a photo reference. It made me think about how much white space to leave and how I wanted to design the white space. Nothing more intimidating than splattering a tidy and clean monochromatic study. I like the energy, movement and depth it seems to add to the piece.  Carol kept reminding me that these paintings really can’t be ruined. I think she is right about that. It just opens a whole new set of challenges and suggests something new.

I will post my future attempts with this technique.

Thank you to Ahmed Farahat and his photo I used for reference from Paint My Photo.


Shine Upon You and Yours this Holiday Season!

Thankyou to Ahmed Farahat from Paint My Photo for the reference for this painting.

I couldn’t resist painting this picture of a mother camel and baby posted in the camels section of wet canvas. Most of the time, I refrain from using white in my watercolors.  I don’t know why; something about saving the white of the paper? I say ” do what you have to do! ” for the outcome you wish to receive.Too many rules really stunt growth. I have left the white of the paper. I have used yellows in place of white areas…….and I have painted with white. When using white, I wait until I have all my other colors down.  I sometimes feed other colors into the white. Remember that white lightens that particular color  and, if you don’t want that effect, make sure you have your value pattern down on your painting , first. I have used Winsor Newton whites and white gouache but usually prefer American Journey titanium white watercolor. It is opaque enough to appear white and does not dry shiny. Another example of a painting where I added white at the end is found here.