May 10, 2016

Though these paintings were done yesterday, I am completing the post today – I decided to go to sleep early last night due to an extremely early morning for me today.

Now, I will go into the breakdown.

IMG_1256For the first, it is a painting of Lilies of the Valley. I actually am quite pleased with it. I like the way the striations of the leaves came out all in one layer. The ground beneath them also is quite pleasing, and I finally created that mottled effect by starting at one end and moving the wet bead of paint across until complete, so there are no blooms or edges. The sky is a little lackluster for a dawn, and it should have been darker to make the flowers stand out more.

The paper is a cut down Blick house brand 140lb watercolor paper.

Paints: Burnt sienna, naples yellow, cobalt blue, yellow ochre, sap green, ultramarine


IMG_1257The next painting I completed is of a nice church I saw in a neighboring town, and it just made a very dramatic-looking angle as it rose into the sky. So, I snapped a picture on my phone and used the lines as a basis for saturating the building with color. This one is also very vibrant, and the clouds – well, at least you can tell what they are. It is set around sunset, but they could use more work. However, I need to devote some time to cloud and sky boot camp, because I have improved most other things, but skies elude me.

The paper is another cut down sheet of the Blick house brand.

Paints: cobalt blue, yellow ochre, naples yellow, payne’s gray, burnt sienna, sepia, ultramarine, alizarin crimson (I think there are a couple too many here, and it would be more coherent if I used fewer colors.)

“The Coming Storm” of me practicing clouds and skies so I don’t ruin more paintings in the future

The final painting was my largest and most ambitious of the day, and ultimately a great failure. The water I could live with (though there should be more darks in the front), the land I was actually happy with (if you look at the edge of the coastline, I even made the shading suggest cragginess and unevenness of the shore). It was what I was going for. The boat – pleased with it. The trees on the land – wrong color, but not too bad an eyesore. That is an honor held by the sky. This is an example of when to leave well-enough alone. I didn’t, and produced this monstrosity. Terrible clouds. I think I need to try using a different shaped brush and plan more ahead. Ruins a nice sheet of paper, but I will use the other side for practice.

The paper for this was a stray piece of Arches 140lb cold pressed 😦 .

Paints: Naples yellow, sap green, sepia, alizarin crimson, prussian blue, cadmium red, manganese blue, burnt sienna (too many, I think)

Learning points:

  • use fewer colors in a painting to get a more coherent effect
  • work on my clouds and skies, because they are awful 😉
  • try using more of a mop or round brush for skies
  • patience, young grasshopper


Just so you know, I imagine you will see some cloud work in my next posts, because I could use the practice. And yes, I even sign the bad ones, because I could always practice that signature.



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