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watercolor

Experiment with masking fluid

window

It’ s always fun to try new tools, especially when they work well. This time that tool was masking fluid, also known as liquid frisket.

Masking fluid usually consists of latex, water and ammonia, often with some kind of pigment added so you can see where it has been applied. Put some on the paper, let it dry and then you can just pain on top of it. This way it’s possible to preserve highlights or other shapes that would be complicated to paint around.

After trying it out with this quick painting I feel like this is something that I will make use of a lot in the future. I enjoy using my watercolor with lots of water and my painting can get messy at times. It might be useful for other mediums as well, I´m going to look into that.

Watercolor field

field

I wanted to do something quick and simple  to try out a pad of watercolor paper that i got some time back. When I get really nice art supplies I tend to be afraid to use them. I guess i don´t want to mess up and waster them. So they sometimes tend to sit unused for far to long.

Anyway, the paper in question was The Langton Prestige from Daler Rowney. It´s the 300 gsm (140lb) cold press variety made from 100% cotton. I usually go for the cold pressed papers. This is one of those pads that are glued on all four sides so you don’t have to stretch the paper before painting. It´s probably useful if you are painting outside. I found it to be very convenient, but I also found the finished painting got be a bit hard to remove without  cutting it up by accident. It turned out alright in the end, but it was still a problem.

The sky is painted wet on wet, one of my favorite things to do when it comes to watercolor. As for the color palette, I keep coming back to yellow ochre and olive greens. I think they go well together and there is just something about this combination that is really pleasing to me.

This was created with the help of a reference image from PaintMyPhoto, the photographer being Irini Adler

Do you have any color you keep coming back to?

Landscape in watercolor

landscape

I´ve been drawing lots of landscapes lately. So when I felt like doing some watercolor painting, there where plenty of finished sketches to choose from.

I´m one of those people who almost always do at least one preliminary sketch.

This painting is made using three primary colors and two earth tones, mixed in various ways. Just like my previous landscape. I tried painting the sky wet in wet this time however, which I think turned out pretty well. Normally, i´m to scared of ruining things to work with a lot of water.  But there will be further experiments with this technique in the future.I also tried using a fan brush, that I bought at a local art supply store for next to nothing. Might have gotten a bit carried away and used it too much. Oh well, at least I learned something.

There where the usual problems with getting the photo to somewhat match the original painting. It´s not quite there yet, a lot of the more subtle shades have been lost. Overall, it seems very of. But this was the best I could do.

Maybe next time, I will make a landscape where there´s spring. I would need a different green though. What´s your favorite type of green?

Autumn landscape

autumn landscape

Maybe it´s the bleak weather we had here for the past few days that inspired me to do an autumn landscape, even tough it´s spring right now. At least that´s what I´m told… Or maybe it´s just the fact that I recently got myself a few new paints. My old ones did pretty well, but i was concerned with the lightfastness for some of them. I only got three primaries this time, in addition to the lightfast earth tones I already had.

So in order to get familiar with the paints, I used a limited palette for this one. To be precise cadmium yellow, cadmium red, ultramarine and yellow ochre. But mixed in different ways of course. I found that my greens mostly came out as olives. But I do enjoy olives, and maybe it´s just the way I mixed them. Tough I´m thinking it´s one of the properties of the pigments.

I tried to use a more loose style for this, with more wet washes. Most of it was done during breaks while i was studying, which means i never worked on it for very long at once. Maybe that was a good thing, since it forced me to allow the water to dry properly. I also found that I could find mistakes in it easier. But of course many of them still sneaked past me.

There was some trouble with getting the colors right when I photographed this one. I did my best to get it somewhat right, but a lot of the more subtle shades are not really visible. I find this to often be the case with watercolors. Anyone got any hints for getting it right?

A month of projects

A month of school projects ended completely a few days back, and I got to bring my portfolio home. You can see the result of the course in the big picture, though a couple of models are missing. Some things can also be viewed here.

It feels good to do something different now, and get some academic knowledge to connect with the more practical knowledge i have gained. I also have some more time for my own art now. I´m experementing a bit with mixed media, so keep an eye out for that if your interested.

I have very mixed feelings about the things produced during this project. On one hand, the time spent on it make all those papers very special to me. But I also see a lot of mistakes and things I could have done differently. But I suppose there´s no use dwelling on that now, I ´ll just have to remember my mistakes next time and avoid making them again.

Since we focus on spatial planning, the room and the shape of a place is very important. And so is the relationship between different places. Like many others, i tend to focus on the objects and the details, not the shape and the room created between objects. But maybe this new way of thinking can somehow be applied in my own art, to help me find improve as an artist.

Do you tend to focus on the details and the objects?

From sketch to painting.

image

Schools been busy, I was there for over 12 hours today. But I have a lot of fun, event though there’s more work than I’m used to. Today, the assignments were more free than usual. We only had to make a two-point perspective based on the sketches and plans from earlier this week. You could go freehand for this. And while color wasn’t mandatory, it was appreciated by the teachers. We are also supposed to make model of the house, but I’ll save that for the weekend. Of course, I took the chance to use my watercolors. I’m quite happy with it actually. One of our teachers will occasionally tell us to remember that we are architects (of a kind) and not artists. But I think It’s fine to be both. And I’m learning a lot about drawing right now. Especially about how important it is to plan ahead. I have also learned a few things about patience, and the value of straight lines. This post is already longer then intended, but if your interested in some of the plans this painting is based on, go to my previous post. I will add links tomorrow. I also apologize for any strange misstakes in this post, I’m not used to writing things like this on my phone.

Watercolor once more

I spent some time with my watercolor today. After finishing an abstract piece, I wanted to do something different.

Sometimes, it´s very easy to just keep doing things the way you normally do. And I normally don´t make portraits and things like that in watercolor. Most of my work tend to be either landscapes or abstracts. And I normally do landscapes and plants in oil pastel. Portraits, of both people and animals, are made in charcoal and graphite is used for quick sketches.

So this is basically a try at breaking the habit. I tried to work pretty fast and loosely with this, since I tend to obsess about detail.  This was made without any reference, since it was a fast and spontaneous thing. So there´s about a million anatomical mistakes and other fails in there. But at least it allowed me to see the potential watercolor has for portraits. It´s a nice medium, looks so alive.

This might not be the nicest piece, but I consider it to be an important step down the road.

I actually feel a bit guilty about neglecting my other mediums, but I think there will be more time for them when autumn arrives. And I plan to explore more subjects in all of them. Some of it might turn out well, other things are likely to fail. But I will be sure to learn from all of it.

What´s your favorite medium? And what are your usual subjects?

Paint some more

I mentioned in an earlier post, I´ve been obsessed with painting lately. So today I´m showing you my two most recent things.

The street is painted from memory, after a view I saw in Visby one day. Both of these things is a try to work faster. And avoid too much fussing. It might not give me the best results, but it´s good practice. The street view gave me some trouble. It ended up looking like something made by a small child. But I decided to share it anyway, because it feels like an important step down the road. If you went searching for this street, you would most likely not find it. It changed a bit from the original when I put it on paper.

My painting of the poppy is a bit more successful. I wanted to paint the ones that grew close to where we are staying. But a lawnmower ate them. So I had to make do with this small and lonely thing. But it was pretty to. Halfwaythrough this i dropped my brush in a place where it couldn´t be reached. It was pure sadness. But i had a small backup to finish this with.

Whenever I photograph a drawing or painting, it always turn out wrong. I don´t know how to fix it either. Keep trying i guess. The poppy in particular looks a lot better in person.

What to paint next?

 

Water and color

We arrived at Gotland during the night, so today we were all lazy and tired. And the weather was strange, warm but very hazy. So I spent most of the day inside, except for an hour spent photographing some birds. Plenty of time for watercolor in other words.

The painting you see here was a pretty quick thing, but I´m kind of happy with it. Even though it looks better in person. The photo is too pale. I was hoping to paint the sunset here, but since it´s so hazy outside you can´t really tell the ocean from the sky right now. Maybe tomorrow. I have to be content with landscapes from fantasy for now.

I´m not really sure if this drawing is looking to plain or not. Adding a new element to it might not be a good idea though. I was thinking about adding some more texture to it, in the grass for example. But decided against it until I´m convinced it´s a good idea. Does anyone have an opinion on this?

Tomorrow will be photography time for me, but I also hope to get to paint my sunset. I need to paint from life more 😛

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