#281 Direct Watercolour

When I saw this challenge pop up on Marc Taro’s blog I decided that 30 days of direct watercolour painting in June would be a great opportunity to get some practice in. Yikes, no pencil or pen, just drawing with a brush. I needed this practise to become a little more adventurous and bolder with brush work.

It’s so hard for me to break old habits. I had a practise run before the start of the month with a floral painting. Not as bold in the foliage as I would have liked but I don’t mind how the bud turned out. I guess if I can find one small part of a painting I’m happy with then it’s not a complete disaster.

My second attempt was a portrait. After all I do like doing portraits so it shouldn’t be too intimidating. Wrong! Once again much too tentative. Ignoring the fact that it looks nothing like the subject the few parts I thought were successful were parts of the hair and the clothing.

Third attempt I thought I’d go for a simple subject. What can I say about this one? Nice paper 😂

Next attempt was a Plein air sketch of a little heritage cottage in town. I think the foliage was reasonably successful and I’m happy that it conveyed an impression of the cottage, but as usual I’m often disappointed with my result.

The following was another portrait attempt, which I think was a little more successful than the first. I started this with a small waterbrush and Raw sienna. You can just see the initial lines under the chin and top of the head. Unfortunately I still have a tendency to keep painting into wet areas and not allow that layer to dry.

My last sketch of a rooster was done with limited supplies as we were travelling and all I had was a little sketch book, a waterbrush and travel palette.

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to keep up this challenge as life and travel got in the way, but I can see how keeping up this practice would improve my skills. I might have to give this another shot at a later date.

7 thoughts on “#281 Direct Watercolour

  1. They are much better than you think. Not a bad one in the bunch. The last portrait is lovely. As is the rooster. I don’t see color running. But isn’t that what Marc wants us to do?

    I have tried this technique and am horrible at it. It is loosening me up some, however. Do you plan to keep at it even if you can’t do the 30 day challenge? (yes, life does get in the way. All the time)

  2. I’m puzzled why you’re so hard on yourself. The graduated blue of the iris flowers are beautiful. The first portrait is compelling, I think the eyes are shiny and beautiful, and there’s an overall feeling of intelligent consideration that I love. I see plenty of seagulls in New Zealand and your bird’s appearance and posture evokes visits to the beach. Your cottage immediately brings to mind cottages that I’ve seen in Clyde, Central Otago, NZ (if you’re interested check out https://exploringcolour.wordpress.com/2018/04/15/cottages-in-clyde/ In short, I admire these paintings very much!

    1. Thank you Liz. You are very kind. I guess I’m never truly satisfied with my paintings, some less so than others. Your cottages are gorgeous.

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