Tuesday Watercolour Class – Week Four

Light to dark. Big to small. Soft to crisp. These three guidelines are very helpful to the watercolour painter. We discussed them again this week as well as soft-edge techniques. Our gift bags are a good subject for these techniques.

The first step of this demonstration is the pencil drawing (above left). I then wet the entire bag, except the handle, with water. While wet, I added yellow and green and allowed it to run.

Three areas of the bag were developed in step three (above left). Look at the left panel of the bag. I painted a wide band of water above the crease and touched in paint along the bottom edge of the water, right over the crease. This gives a defined edge to the crease.

A middle tone has been added to the interior of the bag and I’ve darkened it at one end.

The right hand panel has received a middle tone and dark has been injected into a few spots. Our gift bag now has structure and seems to be three-dimensional.

Step four (above right) shows the development of the shadow areas. The different planes have been painted individually and add definition to these areas.

It’s time to deal with the handle and it’s cast shadow. I’m very patient, aren’t I? These are the smallest shapes so I’m still following the ‘big to small’ guideline. They are darker than the panel of the bag so ‘light to dark’ applies, as well.

Earlier, I left paper-white for the handle. I’ve kept a trace of it on the upper edge.

Not everyone was inspired by the subject but that can be a good thing. Sometimes, we are so enamoured with an attractive subject, such as a bouquet of flowers, that we become tentative and nervous and it shows in the result. Our prosaic bags were appropriate for the exercise and not very intimidating. The Tuesday painters did a great job with them.


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One Response to “Tuesday Watercolour Class – Week Four”

  1. lindahalcombfineart Says:

    Barry – great exercise and explanation. I think I will work on this myself. I like to go back to basics as a refresher. I have not painted long enough for everything to be intuitive.

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