Monthly Archives: April 2015

Exploring one subject in various ways – paintings

Watercolour and Pen_ 25 April 2015_  29.7 x 42 cm

Watercolour exercises 29 (5)

Pen, Watercolour and Gouache_ 27 April 2015_ 29.7 x 42 cm

Watercolour exercises 29 (6)

Watercolour, Gouache and Charcoal_ 29 April 2015_ 29.7 x 42 cm

Watercolour exercises 29 (7)

Pen, Watercolour, Charcoal and Oil Pastel_ 2 May 2015_ 29.7 x 42 cm

Watercolour exercises 29 (8)

Painting the same image in different ways was a good way to find different colours and shapes in the images I was painting.

I had enjoyed using the wax resist techniques in the first part of the course and wanted to explore that further so chose oil pastels as an additional medium, together with some pigment liners and charcoal sticks which I already had. The latter I find really useful to give structure to the watercolour and charcoal I find adds instant drama. The oil pastels are wonderful to use as they give you the chance to work towards light again.

They are all mediums I would use again and I enjoyed doing all the paintings, especially the last one which brings out the colour of watercolour, the drama of charcoal and the three dimensionality of oil pastels.

Having said that, I was trying to get away from the figurative as we are supposed to be learning to paint abstract, but I have not succeeded in doing that on these occasions. Maybe later.

 

Exploring one subject in various ways; Sketchbook 1; 64-65

In this exercise the theme is Lime Avenue at Kenwood House. The first image was taken in October last year, whilst the other images are more recent, taken at different times of day. Starting with sketches in sketchbook.

Pen and watercolour on sketchbook_ 22 April 2015_ 9 x 13 cm

Watercolour exercises 29 (1)

Pen, watercolour and gouache on sketchbook_23 April 2015_ 9 x 13 cm

Watercolour exercises 29 (2) 

Watercolour, gouache and charcoal on sketchbook_23 April 2015_ 9 x 13 cm

Watercolour exercises 29 (3)

Pen, watercolour, oil pastel and charcoal on sketchbook_ 25 April 2015_ 9 x 13 cm

Watercolour exercises 29 (4)

Painting a landscape on coloured ground

Watercolour on paper 1_ 20 April 2015_ 21 x 29.7 cm

Watercolour exercises 28 (11)

Watercolour and gouache on paper 2_ 20 April 2015_ 21 x 29.7 cm

Watercolour exercises 28 (12)

Watercolour and gouache on paper 3_ 20 April 2015_ 21 x 29.7 cm

Watercolour exercises 28 (13)

Note: these were three studies done on location, showing bluebells that are just opening.

  • I think they show clearly how a different background can change the atmosphere of a painting. The second painting is probably more representative of a spring setting in the UK, whereas the third one seems to depict a much warmer climate
  • the blue background lent itself better to the actual view, I think; I did not have to add a sky as it was already there and the lime green of the leaves was made by just adding yellow which mixed with the background
  • putting sienna as a background made this more of a challenge; it did not really blend in with the trees and it made the blue of the bluebells fade. It does however make the picture immediately more vibrant
  • the gouache was vital to add some perspective to the paintings where it was used
  • being able to change the background is a useful tool in watercolour painting

 

Drawing on a coloured ground; Sketchbook 1; 57-59

These are two exercises to make us consider carefully the colour temperature. We seem to be given free rein about what medium to use, as well as watercolour: gouache, oil pastel, pencil, charcoal etc.

1.) The first is on a warm coloured background. I have chosen yellow ochre and am doing a sketch first although the course does not require it.

This is a painting of a small terracotta sculpture. Watercolour on sketchbook _ 17 April 2015 21 x 29.7 cm (paper)

Watercolour exercises 28 (5)  Watercolour exercises 28 (6)

Watercolour on paper_ 18 April 2015_ 29.7 x 42 cm

Watercolour exercises 28 (7)

2.) The second exercise is a ‘cool’ colour background . I have used Payne’s Grey and the image of ‘Two Piece Reclining Figure 5’ by Henry Moore, which is sited in the grounds of Kenwood House. First a sketch using oil pastels.  Watercolour and oil pastel on sketchbook_ 19 April 2015_ 29.7 x 21 cm (paper)

Watercolour exercises 28 (8)

Watercolour and gouache on paper_ 19 April 2015_ 42 x 29.7 cm

Watercolour exercises 28 (10)

Note: I am asked to notice the difference that working on a warm and a cool tonal background has. I liked that it made me concentrate on the lights and darks more than I do normally, but for me that was the same whether I worked with warm or cool colours.

Tonal studies made on a coloured ground; Sketchbook 1; 55-56

The course is gradually guiding us towards abstraction.

The origin of the word ABSTRACT is Latin, namely ab: from + trahere: to draw. The word has many meanings for the various uses, as indeed the verb to draw has many meanings, but for the purposes of this course I think the relevant one is ” of art that seeks to make an effect through form and colour alone”.

We are asked to paint the background different colours. Starting with sketches in the sketchbook. I struggled with the first image which was all various hues of reds and greens. The paint seemed to float on top of the green background and nothing stayed the same colour. Even white became green again as soon as it dried.

Watercolour exercises 28 (1)  Watercolour exercises 28 (2)

I decided to try a different image and that seems to be easier. Watercolour on sketchbook _ 16 April 2015 _ 29.7 x 21 cm (paper size).

Watercolour exercises 28 (3)

 

Watercolour on paper _ 16 April 2015 _  42 x 29.7cm

Watercolour exercises 28 (4)