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Friday, February 4, 2011

Snowy Cutchogue View

Snowy Cutchogue View - Demo


Several people have asked me to do a demo of my watercolor and ink work. Since I've been doing a lot of "plein air" painting from my car, I tried to take photos yesterday of what I was doing. This isn't one of my best paintings, but I thought it would give you an idea of what I do.

I parked my car and moved the driver's seat back as far as I could to give me room to paint on my lap. Usually I put some kind of journal between the seats so I can balance my fieldkit there while I paint. This painting was done in a 5 x 8 moleskin watercolor journal.

Photo 1 - After sketching the scene in pencil I did some basic washes for the sky, the buildings, the bushes and the snow. I was using my trusty waterbrush at this point. (You can probably see that the journal is balanced on my lap.)

Photo 2 - I began adding adding ink around the buildings. I try not to completely outline the shapes with a continuous line. I use breaks in the lines, dots in some spots, scribbles and small dashes.

LOL It isn't easy to take photos in the confined space of the car.
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Re: Snowy Cutchogue View - Demo

I usually use a micron pen for the lines...like the micron 05 in the first photo. I usually use sepia ink rather than black. It seems less stark to me.

I continued using the pen on the buildings. If you touch a wet brush to the ink while it hasn't dried completely, it adds some nice color to the area when it bleeds. I did that with the red buildings. I added orange to the sunlit sides of the red building. I also deepened the color on the shaded side of the red and blue buildings, and added shadows on the snow areas of the bushes with cobalt blue.
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Re: Snowy Cutchogue View - Demo

To do the tree trunks and branches I used a travel brush (#6). For water I usually just squeeze a few drops of water from the waterbrush into the corner of one of the field kit palette sections. For a small painting that is just about enough and I keep adding more water as needed. If I'm doing a larger painting I use a water container that I sit in the car's cup holder.
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Re: Snowy Cutchogue View - Demo

With the travel brush I added more tree trunks and branches behind the buildings. Drybrush was used for some of the smaller branches and twigs.

For this entire painting I only used a pencil, a waterbrush, the micron pen and the #6 travel brush.
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Re: Snowy Cutchogue View - Demo

Ink lines wer added to the fence and more snow shadows from the buildings. Here are a few photos that show the details on either side of the page. The paints I used are in my W&N field kit. You can see that I have added a few other colors in the corners.
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Re: Snowy Cutchogue View - Demo

Here is the finished painting. This photo was taken indoors so the lighting isn't as good as the other photos. I may add something in the foreground on the right yet. It looks a bit too empty right now. I'll live with it for a while before I decide.

Hope you enjoyed seeing the steps!
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7 comments:

Joan Sicignano Artist said...

Joan, you are a very talented lady. Thank you for sharing your plein air painting from you car. Your watercolor journal, what type do you use? I have learned so much from you.

Jo Castillo said...

Oh, thanks so much for this. Maybe I will try again. :) I bet it took much longer to photo and prepare this than to paint it! You do such lovely watercolor and pen work. Sigh.......

Lin said...

Beautifully done and demoed Joan -- LOVE your style and thank you for posting the step by steps!

AutumnLeaves said...

What a stunning end product, Joan! Despite the obstacles of photographing and thinking of your process, I think this is one of my favorites yet!

Joan said...

Joan - This was done in a 5 x 8 moleskin journal. Thanks.

Jo - Thanks. It was the organizing that took a while. lol

Lin - Thanks!

Sherry - Thank you. It was a challenge to take photos of something in my lap in the car. lol

Teressa Thompson said...

I commented over on wet canvas too... Great tutorial. Thank you so much for sharing your process with me. I'm a greedy bugger, I know. LOL

I'm so so so impressed with all the details that you can capture and the lines after you paint really sets it off. Thank you a million times over!

Now I wish I'd seen this before I went out to journal yesterday. LOL not that it would have changed things for me. I'll need to practice what you do before I can attempt to do this. My style is so very much different than yours... but I love yours. You've given me a real treat today! Thank you.

Joan said...

Tee - Thanks! I'm glad you liked the demo. Hope it helps.