For this exercise I had to set my paper lengthways choose a strong colour and with a small amount of colour work in water. With a medium wide brush work from the top to the bottom of the sheet with increasingly dilute mixes of the colour until, at the bottom of my sheet I had a very pale wash almost faded out to white. After practising find another colour that is close to the original in the spectrum and paint graded washes on at least two more sheets.
Next work wet in wet paint a graded wash onto one of the sheets that has the first colour. Keep the intense tone of the new colour at the pale end of the first colour and allow the colours to merge in the centre.
First I didn’t have any watercolour paper so had to use a mixed media paper, however it worked well enough to do the exercises. I taped them down to a board but on removal they are still buckled so didn’t work as well as a well stretched watercolour paper. I tried applying the colour to the paper dry on the first exercises then adding water as I went down to dilute the paint as I went, in the main this worked well and I got a gradual lessoning of colour. However it works better when the first line of colour is applied to damp paper as can be seen in the large wet in wet exercise sheet. The Crimson pigment in the dilute Acrylic didn’t lay that even so it wasn’t as smooth as I could wish, it was slightly better with the orange though it had a mix of Crimson and Cadmium Yellow so wasn’t perfect.
The wet in wet didn’t work too well as by the time I had turned the paper around the Acrylic had dried when my wash got to the merge stage. I had slight merging of colour but you could still see a dry line. I found a larger offcut of paper and tried again, first I wet the paper and then applied the Crimson, turned the paper around and applied the Orange and got some nice fingers of mixing colour in the centre, rather like high summer cloud washing over the blue sky.
I am finding the experiments fun and a great way to learn about the properties and art of using Acrylic paint. I think in future when I get my off cuts of watercolour paper I will repeat the process and see how the paint behaves on a better support.
For this exercise I was to try an exercise with pastels if I had them. Pastels are both drawing and a painting medium, and nowadays are used more in the latter category. The application of oil pastel and soft pastel is very different, particularly in relation to painting:
Oil pastel is usually used with turps and can be used to layer and blend.
Soft pastel picks up the tooth of the support and can be blended with paint using a damp cloth or brush and water scumbling techniques.
Large areas can be covered with the side of a stick, lay one colour over the other and blend colours and tones. The points can be used for linear details.
I was to practise making marks and blending with pastels and if I had time make a simple picture.
I had some old oil sticks which I had never used and about 6 water soluble colours, but no turps.
A few techniques were attempted using sticks in various ways, making a number of marks using the point and the side of the sticks and blending with various methods, fingers, kitchen roll, baby oil (no turps), and water which I blended the water soluble crayons with. I also drew two rough pictures using just about all the above. The one thing I found was finer work without adapting the sticks or using turps was difficult and it made me use it vary lose in application.
I didn’t use chalk pastels as they are something I have used a lot in Drawing 1 so I wanted to try out the oil crayons as they were new to me and I wanted to try out using them. They are a lot more versatile than I realised, so will attempt using them again in the future.
For this exercise I had to try out various ways of applying paint. I chose to use acrylic paint, in part because it dries quickly and secondly I couldn’t afford oil paint as well. Watercolour would not work well with the criteria given.
Experimenting with technique and mark was great fun and gave a great awareness of the use and ways of applying paint in order to gain a specific look. Some of the thicker applications were Impasto and the texture could add something to the detail. One thing I was really taken by was the way a thin application of paint could glow on the paper the pigment pure, a second application of a thin colour would show the one underneath altering the top hue.
White made everything opaque and it was obvious at this stage to use the paint effectively it would take a lot of experimenting. It was also fun to put a base colour under an opaque one then scrape of the top to expose the colour beneath. I think experimenting with its use could take a lifetime of knowledge before you could become an expert.
I was to start by exploring my brushes making a range of marks and shapes that can be made with them. Use flats, rounds, filberts. I tried various marks and also had a quick go at some seed heads. Someone had given me a pad of canvas so I painted them on that. I just had fun and tried various thickness of paint and different paper. The first lot was painted on A1 taking notes as to which brushes were used and what they were best for. Grass worked really well with a dry brush which I found out unexpectedly whilst exploring.
Next from memory I had to draw a small simple landscape about A4 in size, using large brushes so I am not distracted by the urge to include detail. Concentrate on the possibilities and patterns made by the bush marks. Then after the experimenting I was to draw a piece of fruit using the techniques, taking care to set the fruit in direct light to help define the form.
I don’t mind admitting anything from mind scares me. My brain doesn’t have the ability to recall landscape I haven’t done them enough, however I had just drawn a wood for my final piece in Drawing 1 so I decided to draw one. I used a large one inch flat and a filbert to do the piece, not my best piece of work, but it was great fun. I dry brushed grasses and washed the background colour using the paint in various thickness throughout. My strokes were varied and it was a fun piece.
Watercolour is the only paint I have used so this is going to be a huge learning curve. Acrylic was my chosen paint and I first watch some videos and read up about how to use it. Not an easy task to use, but oil would be difficult as I don’t have a good place to leave wet oil paintings to dry, without my animals deciding to add to the look. Acrylic dry quickly and I tried to look at the problems before I began. The brushes were great fun, I had only used rounds and a big flat I didn’t realise the shapes and line you could make, nor how fine a line can be done by using the fine side of the brush. Some beautiful shapes can be got by turning the flat brushes as you use them.
After trying out the brushes not only with changing mark, I altered the surface and the thickness of the paint. I tried my landscape, I don’t mind admitting anything from mind scares me. My brain doesn’t have the ability to recall landscape I haven’t done them enough, however I had just drawn a wood for my final piece in Drawing 1 so I decided to draw one. I used a large one inch flat and a filbert to do the piece, not my best piece of work, but it was great fun. I dry brushed grasses and washed the background colour using the paint in various thickness throughout. My strokes were varied and it was a fun piece.
For the fruit I chose an Apple and decided to paint it on a sheet of canvass which I primed in Gesso. Part way through I began to panic as it looked more like a Pepper but after various layers of paint it began to look like an Apple and I was pleased with the end painting.