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Tag Archives: liquid frisket

I ran across a night scene in a photograph from wet canvas that caused me to pause. I had only attempted a couple other night scenes since I began painting and decided to give the above a try. How to do the red dark and still get the sign in the foreground to appear as though it is green in sunlight?  I think learning to make rich dark washes is one of the most difficult skills to learn.

Prior to adding any color to the drawing of the above scene, I went in search of a reference to use for the guy walking past. He is actually from a beach scene photo I have. I put a hoodie and jeans on him and had him carry a small bag instead of a picnic basket and added him to the scene. I used liquid friskit to save his image and  the lettering and neon lighting on building and parking sign.

My first wash of color was aureolin and I applied it in a watered-down wash over the entire scene. I allowed that to dry. On a scrap piece of watercolor paper, I worked some oranges, reds and then greens to experiment with different combinations and values until I got a feel for the colors. I used no browns in this piece other than what was created from the greens and oranges and reds. I like the deep dark colors I was getting from hookers green and fire engine red.  In the deepest dark areas, I would add alizarin crimson with those two colors.  I slowly added washes of orange and red and worked wet-in-wet as I approached the darker areas.  Some areas just had the yellow and orange washes and others, as I moved outward, had the green added to the wash. I was very careful with the amount of water I used as I did this. I did not want the paper to become over saturated.

I painted the municipal Parking sign with green, then red, then green again so it looked a little more green than the other washes.

I waited for all the above to dry. I had to go back in to the deepest dark areas and lay in deeper dark colors and softening edges where the dark colors met the lighter areas. I allowed that to dry. I then took a damp brush and smeared some of the colors from the dark areas over the double windows on the upper left so they did not appear to be in bright light from the Hotel sign.

After all of that dried, I removed the liquid friskit (masking fluid) and painted the areas that required colors, using a small brush. I smeared the dark color of the green sign over the lettering and lighter rectangle beneath that sign so they appeared darker. There were some blues in the neon around the windows and I used that color in the man’s jeans to subtly draw the viewer’s eye to him.

This was a fun painting.

Below are the other night paintings I have tried.

 

Thank you to wet canvas for the reference photos for the above paintings.

 

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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.

 

winterbarnnight

HAPPY HOLIDAYS EVERYONE!

curlydog   This is another ink and watercolor. I used frisket and inked lines with a #4 round brush this time, prior to spritzing it with water as in the elephant. After all that dried, I washed in the colors. I then removed the friskit and went back in with watercolor and ink. The last thing I did was splatter with a small rigger. Thank you to wet canvas for the beautiful reference image of this dog.

LionB

 

I need to kick-start myself into painting more frequently. Everything is getting in the way!

I had fun with this lion. I used a limited palette of about five colors. They were Arctic Ice, Raw Sienna, Copper Kettle, Halloween Orange and Sepia.

LionB2

 

I began by cropping my reference photo so the lion’s eye was near an area that is good for a focal point.  I drew the lion and splattered the surface of the painting with frisket, using a small brush. I wanted the resulting splatter to be tiny pinpricks of texture throughout the lion’s mane and shoulder. I began by mapping out where I wanted my most dominant darks. I know! Opposite of what the watercolor books say. I think that once you learn the basics, you can allow yourself some freedom of expression and there are some subjects that I build from light to dark and others where I map out the dark areas, first. I almost always push the darks even farther during my final steps in the painting.

LionB3

 

Next, I concentrated on the midtones and light wash shapes in and throughout the face area. This is where I want to draw my viewer’s eye, so I try to feel for the contours of the lion’s face, around the nose, eye, brow and muzzle. It helps to define what portions of the lion’s face bumps out and what rolls in and gives the face more of a 3-D feel and not read so flat.

LionB4

 

This is the step I washed in, very loose and wet, a background. I painted around the whisker dots on the muzzle and filled in the shapes in the eye and the nose. I added the background blue in heavy and light washes in and around the painting. I always bring my background colors into the foreground. I feel this gives a painting better balance. It takes a simple background and gives it a reason for being and helps to create a feeling that the subject is a part of the environment he is in rather than pasted on. I chose this particular blue because this painting is for a Detroit Lion fan.

LionB

 

In the final step I do all the tiny detail work and enhance some areas. I darkened and detailed the eye. I darkened the fleshtones in the nose. I defined more shapes around the eye. I darkened and defined the muzzle around the whiskers so the frisket areas would show up. I enhanced the shadow shapes under the chin, both sides of the ear and far brow line with Halloween Orange. I darkened all the shadow shapes. I removed the frisket once the painting was dry.

Thank you to Wet Canvas for the reference for this lion.

Splashing wave

 

I have painted this wave once before on masa paper here. This time I wanted to try something a little different. I had read in a book titled “Terry’s Top Tips for Watercolour Artists” (by Terry Harrison) that he sometimes uses a sponge to create the white foam on the tops of waves or I think they are sometimes referred to as whitecaps.

I have outlined how to use liquid frisket with a brush in another post here. Using the frisket with a sponge is much the same.

frisketsupplies

 

Left to right are my frisket supplies. Frisket can be referred to as masking fluid or drawing gum, also. On the left is my rubber pick up. This is used after your painting has dried and you need to remove the frisket to expose the white of the paper. You do so by carefully rubbing this across the surface. It removes the frisket much like an eraser.  I have two kinds of frisket in the photo. The incredible white mask is pretty thick and I only use that when I am not too concerned about exactness, like for splattering and such. The other is Pebeo Drawing Gum. This is my favorite. I like it because it is runnier and easier to work with when using it for tiny areas that need more detail. Next is a small jar of brush cleaning soap and last is my frisket brush.

sponges

 

Above are examples of some of the sponges I have used. When I purchase sponges, I try to look for new shapes to add to my collection so I get a variety. The large one in the center top is the one I chose for this painting. I tested several on scrap paper to see which one would be best suited for what I needed for the white shapes on the wave.

splashingwave2

 

I began by drawing a guideline or two for the rock shapes on my watercolor paper (140 lb  Arches Rough). I then prepared my sponge by dipping it in water and allowing it to become soggy. I squeezed out as much of the water as I could. This makes the sponge “thirsty and ready to work. I spritzed some water onto my soap dish and dipped my damp sponge in that first. This makes the outer surface of your sponge shapes a little slippery and will help you get the frisket off when the time comes to rinse. I then dipped my sponge in a puddle of frisket that I poured into an old dish (small to not waste the frisket). I began dabbing the frisket on the contours of the wave, emulating what I saw in my reference photo. I am very careful to rinse and repeat these steps so the frisket never begins to dry on my sponge. I used the sponge for some of the foamy water in the foreground, also. I  immediately rinsed my sponge out when I finished so the frisket did not dry in it. I have read about a landscape artist who allows the frisket to build up on sponges and old brushes and he re-uses them. He gets some very interesting textural effects with these.  I used my brush and more frisket in the foreground to paint in some of the lines and roiling shapes I saw there. Before continuing, I wait for the frisket to dry.

splashingwave3

 

Next, I chose several blues and painted the sky and the shadow shapes in the waves and allowed that to dry.

splashingwave4

 

I  mixed a darker blue for the ocean behind the wave and painted it in very wet. Note the lighter areas around the wave that look kind of foggy. Prior to the dark blue wash drying, I dabbed around the top of the wave with a tissue (non-lotion tissue) and softened the edges of these foggy shapes. I painted in the dark rocky forms with dark earth-tones.  I allowed the painting to dry again.

splashingwave5

I removed all the frisket ; rubbing the surface with the rubber pick up.

Splashing wave

I finished by darkening some of the blues in the foreground and in the darkest areas of the wave. I splattered the top of the wave using a small #4 round and white gouache.

Thank you to wet canvas for the reference photo for this.

anewday

 

Happy New Year to all of you! Thank you for following my blog over the years. I enjoy visiting you and seeing your work and learning the new things you are exploring.

Roxanne Yoquelet

Roxanne Yoquelet

Roxanne Yoquelet4

Roxanne Yoquelet4

We began our class with an introduction to brushes, pigment and paper. We practiced washes and glazes and were introduced to three ways to apply watercolor (wet in wet, wet on dry and dry brushing).

Laura Lindsay3

Laura Lindsay3

Laura Lindsay

Laura Lindsay

We talked about different color combinations and practiced painting some of them.

Laura Lindsay4

Laura Lindsay4

In the third class it was all about trees and foliage and the different ways (sponge, pointillism, scumbling, salt, frisket) texture could be rendered in watercolor.

Roxanne Yoquelet3

Roxanne Yoquelet3

Laura Lindsay2

Laura Lindsay2

Roxanne Yoquelet2

Roxanne Yoquelet2

Then it was on to “Big Sky” and “Big Water” and how to allow the water on your paper to mingle color. How to splatter and how to let go of the reference material a little and allow the water to help create the painting.

Roxanne Yoquelet5

Roxanne Yoquelet5

Laura Lindsay5

Laura Lindsay5

On the fifth week, we discussed buildings and perspective and that they were composed of a collection of shapes that fit together.  I was knocked off my feet when I saw the two paintings, above! What beautiful work after only five weeks.

littlepeople2

littlepeople3

On the last night of class, we practiced painting “little people” to use in our landscape paintings in the future.

A huge thank you to Roxanne and Laura for giving me permission to share their paintings with others.

ponyteam2

 

It has been so long since I’ve posted. I don’t know where the time has gone. I did start my 2014-2015 art classes, so perhaps I am just a bit slower this year.

The above is a repeat attempt on a pony team I first painted here. I wanted to paint it in color. Thank you to wet canvas for the photo reference.

michlighthouse3 

                               Big Red Lighthouse

michlighthouse4

                                 White River Lighthouse 

A couple of years ago, Richard McNaughton challenged many of his fellow art bloggers to paint lighthouses. My sister was up for this! She has always been drawn to lighthouses and visiting them when she travels. To make a long story short, she made sure I had reference photos of five of them for the challenge. You can see the paintings I did from those references by clicking here.  For a while, now, she has wanted me to paint two more of the lighthouses she has visited.  I finally sat myself down and drew and painted them for her. These are both lighthouses from Michigan that she has visited. She says they call the one on the top “Big Red”.

One thing I had to keep in mind is how I painted the previous five as she would like to hang them together. For these, I used a wonderful coldpress watercolor paper called Cartiera Magnani. I also kept these to the size that I had painted the others and tried to stay true to the colors I had used for the others. I had to use liquid frisket to save small areas of white in each painting, since I worked so small. I really enjoy working on this paper but have not been able to order large sheets of it. Every time I try, I am told it is out of stock. I have two blocks of the small 9 x 12  inch sheets remaining. It is a soft paper with an interesting texture and the water and pigments soak into it immediately. It is great for a rather detailed look and retains the brilliant color of the pigments exceptionally well.