Sunday, June 7, 2009
H2o's of a waterfall
Every time I conduct one of my many art workshops, I do the painting first so that I can include it in my email newsletter to announce the workshop and so that I have a total command over that which I am teaching. In this case, I decided to do three half sheet (15"X20") studies. I learned about Mr. Clean Sponges from Mike Bailey and wanted to try them for pulling out cloud vapor and the waterfall. I figured that doing three studies would give me plenty of practice. Mr. Clean sponges have a very fine type of grit that pulls off dried paint like crazy! You dip the sponge in water, squeeze out the water throughly, and apply a gentle abrasive motion to pull off the paint. Drying the paper with kleenex between pull offs is important. If you do all this with a deft hand, the watercolor paper is in no way damaged. This project was a good way to teach the painting of very delicate, light colored values and contrasting them with the final dark foreground of pine trees. I also showed my workshop watercolorists how to render pine trees with the minimum of fuss. I used the Mr. Clean Sponge and some art tape to bring out and mask off the waterfall. The entire watercolor was painted wet-on-dry on 140lb cold press. I do not pre wet the paper nor do I stretch or tape it down on anything. This holds true for all my watercolor painting.