Happy 70th, Mike!

Every time Veterans Day rolls around, I feel emotional. My brother Mike was born on Veterans Day. Today he is 70 years of age. I haven’t seen Mike in quite a while. My thinking about him has changed over the years. As a child, I tried to make contact with him. Mike is severely autistic, […]

Watercolor Portrait Over Blind Drawing

I wanted to see what would happen if I superimposed a regular, studied sketch on a blind drawing of the same portrait subject. I used a photograph of my father as the model on which to experiment. My choice of subject holds emotional content, as my dad passed away a while ago and I still […]

Next Iteration of Eye Clinic Waiting Room Sketches

I’ve done many blind drawings in my sketch books. Sketch books are supposed to be studies for future paintings or larger scale works.  In the pen and ink/watercolor experiment below, I used two of my previous sketches (Man with Hair Too Small for Rest of Face and At the Eye Doctor’s). I drew the outlines […]

Layers of Clouds (Underpainting)

I used lamp black and charcoal gray for the dark undersides of the clouds in this sketch. To soften the edges of the dark brush strokes (applied to dry paper), I diluted the pigment on the brush and drew it parallel to the initial stroke, as one would execute a graded wash.  Toward the bottom […]

Cloud Practice 3: With Blue Skies

In these practice sketches, I tried several different techniques. First, I only partially removed the liquid mask. This resulted in a stippling effect in some of the clouds.  I also laid down a second blue wash on the sky. I tried different ways of sculpting the clouds with gray and black pigments. In the second […]

Practice: Clouds at Different Heights with Blue Sky

This was an attempt to combine clouds with blue skies.  First, I used liquid latex to mask areas for the clouds, then I painted the blue sky. I knew that the sharp edges around the mask would need to be soften, as clouds are soft.  On some of the edges, I added water, before the […]

Cloud Practice Times Four

I divided my 12×9 watercolor block into four sections. I need a lot of practice representing clouds in watercolor.  Instead of painting a generic cloud, I used one of my photographs (previous practice sessions are here:  Gray Clouds in Front of Cloud Line…; and here: Watercolor Cloud Studies – First Trial.) Future practice sessions will […]

Watercolor Sketches: Gray Clouds in Front of Cloud Line, with Evergreens

Here are a couple of more preliminary watercolor sketches of cloud formations. I photographed this cloud bank late last month. I was struck by the smattering of blue sky between the solid mass of white-edged clouds in the background, and smaller steel gray clouds hovering in the foreground. In the first sketch, I laid down […]