Sustained Saturday Watercolour – Rust and Dust!

Still Life - SpringSustSat2/2014

Twelve dedicated and enthusiastic watercolour painters gathered at my studio today. Actually, eleven watercolour painters and one pen and ink artist. It’s rather cold and grim outside, more like March than May, so I was a bit nervous about the response to these old metal containers. They may not be cheerful but that shortcoming, oddly enough, is what makes this a great subject. There’s nothing precious about them. They’re forgiving.

My demonstration was painted with a synthetic 3/4″ flat angled brush on Curry’s, 200 lb., cold press watercolour paper. I used three colours; a triad of Raw Sienna, Rose Madder Quinacridone and Cobalt Blue from Da Vinci. I started with a very broad pencil drawing, indicating the basic shapes but with no detail.

The first goal of my demonstration was to establish luminous lights with very thin washes and some untouched paper white. Middle values came next, throughout the image. I didn’t finish a single object and then move on to another. As washes dried, I worked into them again with darker values and tried to vary the colours. I wanted to keep the ‘look’ of the flat angled brush in the piece.

Watercolour demonstration by Barry Coombs - SpringSustSat2/2014

I didn’t insist that the students follow my lead. My demonstrations are suggestions and don’t have to be emulated during the class. However, many of the students have used the flat angled brush in the past and some prefer it to the round brush. Either way, almost everyone gave it a shot.

What a day! Quality and quantity and I particularly enjoy the variety. I’ll have to wait until September to see another wall like this as today’s class is our last for a while. I don’t schedule many Saturdays when the weather warms up, as a rule, because the focus for many folks turns to gardening and cottaging. Golf, even! I may have miscalculated this spring, if you can call it a spring. Anyway, more Tuesdays classes are on the agenda in the weeks to come. Thanks for following and stay tuned!

Sustained Saturday Critique

Sustained Saturday Critique


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One Response to “Sustained Saturday Watercolour – Rust and Dust!”

  1. Susan Power Says:

    Looks like a great day was had by all!

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