Category Archives: 2.1 Drawing and watercolour

Drawing and watercolour continued

Pencil and watercolour

Watercolour exercises 12 (1)

Watercolour exercises 12 (2)

Watercolour exercises 12 (3)

The leaves of Nandina domestica and the flowers of Hedera helix.  All three are done on the lower third of a 30″x22″ watercolour NOT 140lb paper. [see ‘Colour (cont..)’ for view of whole paper] Having done the quick sketches of fruit and vegetables without pencil outlines on the painting (though I did do studies in pencil in my sketchbook before attempting the sketches), here we are instructed to use pencil. In the first instance to follow the pencil lines quite carefully and in the second to just use them as vague guides. The third does not use pencil, but ink instead. I did the painting first and highlighted it with the ink.


Drawing and watercolour

Quick watercolour studies (cont.)

I enjoyed doing these exercises. The small size means you do not have to spend a great deal of time on each one, although I did spend quite some time on the drawings which are in the sketchbook. I find those help me look at tone, line and texture without having to think about colour.

Painting without following a line of a pencil was new for me and I enjoyed the freedom it gives.

We were asked to keep the colours clear, that is, not mixing too many colours together and in the last exercise with the plums it is apparent why. In the first one, at the top, I used the colours quite pure, but as I tried to make them darker I mixed them and in the third one at the bottom it shows as the colours are quite ‘muddy’ and a lot less vibrant.

The line drawings were fun to do, it was like drawing with a brush rather than painting, and I am glad I kept the studies of line and tone separate as in the one with the grapes I tried them together and did not feel it was as successful. I find it easier to concentrate on one thing at a time.

All the quick watercolour studies were done on 22″x30″ watercolour NOT 140lb

Watercolour exercises 11

Same as below, continuing with studies on how to express tone, line and texture in watercolours. I wanted to try some really dark colours, again very similar. Alizarin Crimson with Ultramarine, Purple Lake with Burnt Umber and Cad Orange with Emerald. I found that I needed to combine more or less all of them to get the colours I wanted.

Watercolour exercise 11(7)

Watercolour exercise 11(8)

Watercolour exercise 11(9)

This time I remembered to add some shadows, it makes a big difference I think. The mix is Viridian and Alizarin Crimson.


Drawing and watercolour (cont.)

Quick watercolour sketches continued

I thought I would try some fruits of similar colours, so have a peach, a plum and some grapes. Have prepared three colours, Purple Lake with Burnt Umber for the darker areas, Cadmium Orange with Emerald for the lighter areas and just Alizarin Crimson.

Watercolour exercise 11(4)

We are asked to focus on tone, line and surface texture. In this one I focused on tone.

Watercolour exercise 11(5)

This was going to be about texture, but I liked it like this and it looks quite linear, the line here being white.

Watercolour exercise 11(6)

This is also linear but with a little sponging for texture.

Drawing and watercolour

Quick watercolour studies – using just watercolour, no pencil or ink – in small A5 size areas of work. I have a 30″x22″ Watercolour 140lb NOT, this subdivides nicely into 9 areas of roughly A5 size. I prepared four colours: Cadmium yellow with orange, Cadmium red with Purple Lake, Hooker’s and Sap green with Burnt umber, and Alizarin Crimson with Viridian.

Watercolour exercise 11(1)

1. painting with medium size sable brushes to try to get the colours and tones approximately right. Yellow pepper, courgette and chilli pepper.

Watercolour exercise 11(2)

2. using paint as a pencil, just drawing the outlines in colour

Watercolour exercise 11(3i)


3. pooling the paint, not to bring out any detail but again the outline, but this time with no lines.