Today’s (almost aborted) watercolor experiment:

Having worked for the past several days on painting studies of real leaves and trees, I thought I would delve into the abstract. My plan was to use my latex resist, pour out a leaf-like design, let it dry, experiment with colors on the uncovered paper, remove the resist and proceed based on what the revealed design suggested.


I was really surprised to see the goopy mess that was supposed to be my liquid latex, when I opened the bottle. Here is the resulting goopy latex-covered watercolor paper.

Watercolor: Preliminary sketch latex resist

I still thought it would be possible to continue and end up with an interesting result.

Here is the next stage, after applying the first wash (Moonglow, (Daniel Smith) and cadmium yellow pale):

Watercolor: Preliminary sketch 2 latex resist plus first wash

Removal of the latex:

What a disaster! The latex resist, resisted being removed. I ended up scrubbing the paper with a piece of leather. After about half an hour, there was still a significant amount of latex on the paper.

I applied a second wash to the paper with the latex partially removed.

Watercolor: Preliminary sketch 3 latex resist, 1sr wash, 2nd wash plus partial latex removal

Finally, after removing all the latex, I finished my abstract leaf.

Watercolor: Final sketch abstract leaf

Abstract Leaf
9″x12″ 140# Cold Pressed Watercolor Block


In this abstract study, there is none of the rigor of the sort that accompanied the leaf exercises that Paul Klee demonstrated in his Bauhaus lectures.  I started this exercise with a fig leaf in mind. In the end however, the vein structure of this fictitious leaf is also made up, however, not in a planned way. The leaf exhibits all the colors of its life cycle.

This study still resembles an underpainting. It is flat both in tonal range and value. I am setting it aside for a now as I nurse the friction burn I sustained while removing the latex.

3 thoughts on “Trouble

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