Spring Tuesday Watercolour Class – Week Three!


I went back to a more traditional still life on Tuesday. Not quite the jumble of colour that we painted last week. Colour, however, is what I discussed at the start of each class.

Almost all of the students follow my recommendation and do a thumbnail sketch before they paint. The thumbnail sketch is used primarily to understand light and shadow and to create a composition. On Tuesday, I suggested an additional quick study to establish colour relationships. On the left side of my demonstration sheet there are two small studies. I’ve used blocks of colour and made no effort to represent apples or vases. Now, take a look at the photo of the still life above. The upper study was made while looking at the left side of the photo and the lower study is from the right. Just colour.

I tried two different solutions in the backgrounds of the studies. The green in the upper study creates a very different mood than the violet in the lower study. Which do you prefer?

Watercolour demonstration sheet by Barry Coombs

There’s so much to think about for a watercolour painter! Some of my students worry about finishing their painting by the end of a three hour class. I don’t care if they finish. Class time should be about the learning process and not about making a product. I’m quite happy to see a thoughtfully developed work in progress during our critique.

Tuesday AM Critique

Tuesday AM Critique

Tuesday PM Critique

Tuesday PM Critique


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6 Responses to “Spring Tuesday Watercolour Class – Week Three!”

  1. Ruth Bailey Says:

    I like the violet background. It gives a punch to the greens that the green background lacks. It looks like several of your students thought so, too!

  2. jane darragh Says:

    I really like the suggestion to undertake a colour study.

  3. lindahalcombfineart Says:

    I always think it is so interesting to see the colors you students choose for the background, tables and clothes under the “main event”. They are thinking!

  4. Lois Says:

    Thanks for sharing this about colors.
    Learned a lot.

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