Friday, January 30, 2015

Watercolor Safe Harbor Week2 (Palos Verdes class)
(Torrance we will be doing this step in class on Monday, See the above blog post for what we did in our last class)

This week I started working to bring up colors in my water and to start adding some color to the boat and the houses on the dock. We have to work in layers when working in watercolor even though it's tempting to go straight to the color but with watercolors it is difficult to remove color once it is down so it is best to work in layers or washes.

I started by working on the body of the boat which is a dark color but it is not a solid dark color. Look at your reference photo, you will see that there are some lighter areas and some detail, if you can bring it up on your computer you will see the subtleties in the dark color. Rather than working with black I mix to a dark color. I use my ultramarine blue, burnt sienna and my purple plus I want to keep this color to the cool side so there will be more blue than sienna. I put it down one layer at a time building up the density or the value the color. This may take several washes or layers, letting it dry in between applications of paint.

The wheelhouse has two sections: On the top shaded section I added a light blue color by using ultramarine blue and a tiny, tiny amount of purple with a lot of water. The lower section I left white for now.

On the Tarp areas I mixed some ultramarine blue with little bit of either Sap Green for hooker’s green. The shadows were made by adding more blue and a little more purple, basically you want a darker color so use less water when mixing the color.

The roof on thebuildings in the back of the boat were a light, muddy yellow color I had on my palette, probably my cad yellow and a touch of orange. I under painted one building on the dock behind the boat in a light pink color using my red and lots of water, the other building I added a little more yellow to the money yellow I was using for the roofs and a lot of water.

When everything is dry you can start bringing up the value of your water. By using several light washes you could make the water look like water just remember it is not just blue. I used green - mostly my sap green - and little touches of very dilute purple so it was only a light lavender tint and I used long horizontal strokes with the end of my brush, to create the water starting in the back with light blue and working forward. I kept most of the green and the lavender colors from the back of the boat to the foreground and in the area where the boat will be casting a reflection I used a darker version of my colors by adding more pigment and less water. The more water you use to pigment, the lighter your value will be so if you want a dark value you use less water.

The water is very darkunder the pier behind the boat I added a darker color under the pier and when it was dry, I used a damp brush to lift out shapes for the pilings and boards that make up the dock.

In the foreground I under painted the pilings and the dock with light sienna and yellow painting over the area being sure to paint over where the crab pots will be.

I will do detail later for some of the buildings on the dock behind the boat for now after the buildings have dried, I took a light lavender color and painted in the shadowed sides of the buildings also the windows and the door.

On the boat in the sunny part of the cabin, I took that light lavender shadow color and looking at myreference photo first, I painted the shadows that go across the sunlit area of the boathouse. Please note that the shadows are not straight they follow the curve of the wheelhouse cabin, this is important because it shows the shape of that cabin.

Torrance project week 1
Lastly I wanted to put in some of the pipes and rigging on the boat. I mixed my dark color again - (see the mixture above) do not use too much water or it won't be dark enough - and I painted in the masts and the pipes and all of the rigging that is on the boat that is dark along with the portholes on the wheelhouse cabin and right over any masking that is there.

This is where we stopped; try to have your painting to this point by next week. I have not removed any masking fluid yet we will do this probably the next time we paint. Keep painting and I will see you in class.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Winter 2015 Watercolor Classes

(Torrance watercolor class the posts I do for the PV class will be the same posts you will review if you need to they will be a week ahead of you so you can read what will be coming up in our class.)

I started my watercolor by first transferring my design onto my watercolor paper using a
pattern and transfer paper. Next I went over the areas that I wanted to save with my masking fluid which included some of the netting, the crab pots on the dock, both of which are just suggestions of net, quick strokes, and sparkles on the water.

When the masking fluid was dry I started in my sky area and painted the area with water so that my paints would flow. I used a light yellow near the horizon painting all the way across the horizon, painting around the boat and around the buildings, though it really doesn’t matter if you go over them.  For the next color I used a red which could be a alizarin crimson or napthol red and then finally I used all through marine blue in my sky area. If you want, you can paint this with your paper turned upside down so you don’t get a green or muddy sky. Let gravity work for you so your colors blend naturally.

To create the backgroundI used water to wet the area because I had let the background dry, if you want to save this step, wait until the background color is just starting to dry and then you can do this step but, if like me, you waited too long rewet the area and then I used a cool red color (alizarin with blue will work) and I painted shapes along the horizon. It doesn't matter what the shapes are because it’s just stuff. It could be a city back there; it could be the rest of the harbor; it could be mountains or trees or whatever, it doesn't matter, they're just shapes. If you paint the background in and the sky is still too wet and your shapes blur, don't worry, just let it dry a little bit more and go over it again it will look like layers of all those things in the background but don't try to create any definite shapes just stuff and let the people decide what it is.

Next I painted the water and you can wet the area for the water as well if you want, it'll help make the colors blend a little better for the water. I used my ultramarine blue and touches of Hooker’s green and a little bit of dioxazine purple starting at the horizon, I painted over parts of the dark areas of my boat and I painted under the pier, I also painted over parts of the crab pots sitting on the foreground dock, you can paint over things that will be dark because it won’t matter and you can paint things like the crab pots because, 1, you should have protected the bright areas with the masking fluid, and 2, they need to have this color behind them because they need to have the color coming through them so don't be afraid of painting over items in your painting because it either doesn’t matter or it needs to be there anyway. I added green and I added purples to my water because water isn't just blue, it has many different colors in so don't be afraid to use more than one color in your water. I did keep this this wash very light by adding a lot of water to my mix, you don't want to get too dark too quickly this will be highlights later on and where you put the masking fluid in the water that will become sparkles but for right now this is just one layer we will have several layers as we progress.

This is where we ended and we will continue next week. Keep painting.