Landscape Sketch, With and Without Water

Nice walk to the lake today. Half hour to the lake, half hour to sketch and half hour back. That was the plan.  I brought different pencils with me: a very soft 8B, a soft 4B, another soft 2B and a harder HB. After 30 minutes sitting on a bench, I finished the sketch you […]

View of Break Room

I used water soluble pencils for today’s sketch. Instead of smudging the pencil marks, I brushed water onto the paper to get different shades of gray. Like the sketch in the post from the other day, I obtained a range of tonal values. The filing cabinet (in the lower right portion of the frame) is […]

Line Design

Some parking lots have double lines that delimit parking spaces. This gives a properly-parked driver comfort that his (or her) door will not be bashed by another parker who pays attention to lines. The white line with the hairpin turn in the photo below, lies on two different substrates: asphalt and concrete.  The composition is […]

Curb with Old Paint

I saw an interesting curb on the way back home. I like the texture of the old paint. It looks like a thick coat. The bricks compliments the color of the paint; their textures contrast. The shadow provides a rich dark tone thereby setting up a full range of tonal values.  

Transparent Iron

I began today’s watercolor by stomping my 1″ hake brush all around my dry watercolor paper. But first I loaded it with transparent red iron, an earth tone. I liked the splashes, but some of their traces did not survive the subsequent steps in my design. After the blots dried, I glazed some areas with Prussian blue, a […]

More Ink/Grayscale Experiments

I’ve been scouring my photo archives for interesting black and whites with interesting geometric composition and a full range of tonal values. For today’s experiment I found a street photo of a dumpster and a staircase that fit the bill.  Here is my pen and ink rendition of the scene: I drew in pencil before inking, […]

Dry Spell

I am hoping to end my painting dry spell, beginning today. I found one of my photos of a hot dog stand that offered a way for me to ease back into painting. It has a good range of tonal values from very dark to very light; the composition is geometric, making it a relatively […]

I Was Wrong Once

Do you know the story of the insufferable man on a blind date, who, trying to impress the girl told her, “I have never been wrong.”  She looked at him with that pasted-on smile, which he must have known was betraying annoyance, so he added, “Oh wait, I was wrong once. I thought I was […]

Warmup – Use of White

The next master watercolorist reviewed in the Tate Watercolor Manual, Lessons from the Great Masters,* was Thomas Girtin. Girtin was a contemporary of Turner, but as his life was cut short, didn’t rise to the same prominence. One of his most famous paintings is The White House of Chelsea, a perfect demonstration of the use […]

Lesson 11 – Adding Washes

I am working through the Tate Watercolour Manual, Lessons from the Great Masters by Tony Smibert and Joyce Townsend in an effort to refine my craft. I fully intend to paint like the masters when I finish the book. I’m not quite sure how long after I finish the book but I know it will come to pass […]