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Saturday, 21 March 2009

Water Colour Workshop

At the beginning of March I attended one of the most stimulating workshops I have so far been to. I had seen Cherry Nichol do a demo at a Constantia Art Society meeting and absolutely loved her work. It was also very fiddley and I must say, I love to fiddle! She firstly paints beautiful washes onto her drawing in the colours she has chosen. Then, painting into the negative spaces she goes into the background and uses a gel called ATP paste (similar in smell to wood glue) which she blends into the wet paint. Then, she uses a tooth pick or pallette knife to move the paint around forming ghost like flowers and foliage. She uses gouache to cover any underpainting e.g. stems and then goes in with Leaf Green and Shadow Green to really bring out the colour. A tiny brush is used to paint Sepia into the darkest areas to highlight the lights. She grates water colour pencil into the wet paint. The splashes of white in the poppies are gouache flicked onto the page from a paintbrush. These are my attemps at the poppies and landscape - a far cry from her expertise, but I am rather chuffed with the outcome. One of the biggest lessons I learned was that there should always be three values. Go in with washes for your first value then go in darker with the second and for the third value go in even darker! Amazingly enough I had not gone in dark enough with the landscape until I looked at the demo she had done and realized my mistake I went in darker on the trunks of the trees and the whole thing began to sing! Needless to say, despite being somewhat brain dead after the workshop, I learned so much! Thank you Cherry, you are an inspiration!

12 comments:

Watercolorist said...

I think it's the first time I've seen watercolors from you. You should keep at this medium. You are really good at it. Particularly love the poppies.
Jean

Barbara Pask said...

Wow Carol, I really love both of these. Sounds like a fun workshop and the results of it are wonderful. Woo hoo, isn't it fun to learn new things? :)

Art with Liz said...

I saw the poppies but this is a first glimpse at the landscape and I must say, it is a WOW. Those 3 values certainly worked in both of these. How about re-doing Slangkop like this???

Carol said...

Hi Jean, Thanks for the kind words. I have posted the odd water colour eg ducks at Kirstenbosch and the en Plein Air post at Maidens Cove. My water colours have always been a bit wishy washy though and that I think was the biggest plus for the workshop, it has made my paintings bolder.

Carol said...

Hi Barbara. Yes, workshops are incredably stimulating. here are just never enough hours in my day at the moment!

Carol said...

Hi Liz. Yes, I am rather pleased with these. Much bolder! Can hardly believe it! Slangkop? That was an oil? or do you mean maidens cove? I am thinking of redoing Maidens Cove, using the wishy washy water colour and my sketch as reference material.

Megha Chhatbar said...

Hi Carol, Greetings from India...Your blog is so interesting and a pleasure to eye..Keep it up dear...Women are actually talented by birth...Isn't it?? :) BTW Carol, I have started a new blog dedicated to my sketch work — Art on Sketchbook

Carolann said...

Hi Carol, please pick up an award from my blog. I love the poppies.

Art with Liz said...

No I did mean doing Slangkop as a watercolour!

And a lemonade award - But as Deano from Deano’s Den put it... “if you are over taxed and over tagged, I totally understand, but felt so happy to give you a link from me...”

Carol said...

Hi Megha Thanks for the visit - lovely to hear from India!! I went to your blog but you had only posted one drawing at that time will visit again soon.

Carol said...

Thank you Carolann for the award! Will do!

Carol said...

OK Liz, maybe I can give it a try in water colour - although I am a bit tired of slangkop - need a different view. Would be great to go there to paint!
Thank you for my award Liz although I have no idea what it is all about. You will have to explain next time we meet and are not talking SASA business!