Tuesday, February 25, 2020

BLACK ROCK SANDS - step by step watercolour of landscape

Black Rock Sands, Wales
Transparent watercolour on archival paper
36 x 29.5 cm.
14 x 11.5 in.
Available for purchase
My value sketch

Masked lines of foam under rocks at right.  Painted blue sky first wet-in-wet with cobalt and phthalo. blue. Sand and rocks started w/w with quin. burnt orange, quin. pink and cobalt blue.

Clouds done w/w with mix of aureolin, quin. pink and cobalt blue. Initial washes on rocks using mixture of orange, violet and indanthrone.

Mostly done, but still looked somewhat bland ...

... so I deepened clouds, darkened rocks' shadows and did a w/w application of indanthrone, violet and orange. I think it adds some lovely depth to the work.

I hope you enjoyed seeing the painting evolve, and thank you for dropping by!

Sunday, February 23, 2020


Tuco - 14 x 11.5 in.
I'd like to try mounting the paper on a cradled frame, and varnishing it. But I'll wait to see what Tuco's owner thinks.

Graphite drawing

I masked some of his face where I anticipated screaming along with some bright red paint.

Mask removed, and I started some wet-in-wet washes.

Some wet on dry was done where the shadows and colours were deepest.

More w/w

Here, I was starting to get some expression on his face, and adding some some of the softer, lighter colours.

I was almost done with the face. I added his collar, and some shadows around it. In the final stage, at the top of the post, I added more soft shadow to suggest his neck and chest. Somehow, he looked like a floating head without it.

The colours I used were scarlet lake for the red slash; for the darker hues, I used mixtures of quin. burnt orange, quin. violet and indanthrone; for the softer shadows I worked with combinations of quin. pink, aureolin and cobalt blue.

If you have any questions, or would like to enquire about commissioning a portrait, please feel free to write me at studioatthefarm7@gmail.com

Thank you so much for dropping by!

Monday, February 3, 2020

A VERY DRAMATIC SKY - watercolour step by step

I did a fairly detailed [for me] value sketch.

First wet-in-wet washes. Sky - a bit of aureolin. Beach - a mixture of quin. burnt orange and cobalt blue. 

A mixture of indanthrone, quin. burnt orange and quin. pink for the distant mountains.

Then the part that really makes the picture. I wet the sky twice, drying a bit in between, to keep the paper wetter for more time. I needed the extra time to play with the dark sky, adding more colour here, lifting there. The colours are again indanthrone, quin. burnt orange and quin. pink.

Finally I add the details of the waves to lead the eye to the focus on the lower right, and make the image actually look like a beach scene. I might have made the sky more imposing than it was in the photo, but then the painting IS about the sky. And the dark winter weather here has left me feeling somewhat "dark", too. I wish to thank Barb Thurgood for the use of here image of Black Rock Sands as reference. The painting is 8 1/2 x 14 inches framable.

Thank you so much for dropping by!