Lake in the Wilderness

I really spent a lot of time on this one and tried to focus on one aspect at a time. A lot of wet-in-wet, actively planned and carried out, and a lot of forced mixing on the paper. I am calling it forced because I had to force myself to calm down and not overmix on the palette before applying the color to paper. The actual mixing and melding of the colors on the paper was as passive as can be.

I really did leave a limited palette for my uses. I find it is helping me to determine the differences between the warm and cool versions of a general hue, like a red or a blue. I also am happy to say that I planned this painting out a lot before even starting to paint it. This really came through for me in the final result. I think I was quite successful with preventing myself from overworking it.

I must say, this was also the first painting that I have actively incorporated the use of a paper tissue in the painting process. I do enjoy the effect in making clouds. I hope you see the difference as well.


This was on Kilimanjaro 140 lb cold press. I know that I will try to stretch the paper before starting next time, as the multitude of washes and glazes really warped the paper and caused a lot of tissues to perish in the making of this piece.

I tried some different colors this time: Phthalocyanine Blue, Permament Yellow Deep and Rose Madder. I chose these colors because I liked the gem-like qualities of the blue and red hues that I thought would best lend themselves to the subject as I saw from the reference photo I was using. Also, I love working with color at the limits of what is believable – I will just refer to this as my own artistic license.

All of the paintings I have made up until this point has been using some house brand brushes that you could get for $6 a pack, not on sale. Sure, I made a few acquisitions, but not brush was more than $5. All were from the bargain bin.

Well, since I have noticed a big difference by using good quality paper and paints (love the M Graham – also a great value for all that pigment, to be honest), I thought it was time to treat myself for Christmas and upgrade my brushes. Fortunately, I snatched up almost a full set of Princeton Neptune Synthetic Sable series online. Reviews seemed good, and I have noticed that a larger brush really helps for about 80% of a painting once you work on something larger than 8×10. The smaller brushed are usually for small intricate details, final touches, or some negative painting around a combination of the aforementioned. The best news is that the shipping seems to predict they will arrive in time for Santa to place them under the tree to be opened on Christmas day. I hope they do! (Gotta love the eBay.)

Then, to help alleviate the guilt of shelling out some cash on a ‘hobby,’ I sold one of my original paintings on my Etsy store and recuperated some cash! That’s right! This whole exchange was meant to be.

Here’s the painting that I am shipping away safely to a new home:


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