I recently taught a beginners watercolour course at a local arts centre and in doing some preparation, was attempting some loose still life paintings, in the style of the late, great Charles Reid. No one comes close to his style but I think these later ones are an improvement on my very early attempts at watercolour.
Have a look at my earliest watercolour on this blog, which incidentally I started way back in October 2011 merely to keep a record of my progress.
The composition was acceptable, a reasonable attempt at negative painting, but the rest was pretty bad. I’m glad I started this blog (which was purely for my own record) so I do have a record of paintings that have since long gone. This one to the rubbish bin.
The following are my most recent still life watercolours, both painted with my limited palette of Cotman colours on Bockingford paper with cheap Renoir brushes.
I chose these budget supplies because I was allocated a limited budget to supply paints, brushes and paper for each student. I am more than impressed with Cotman watercolours. Classified as a student range the tubes have the pigment code, permanence and lightfast rating listed which a lot of the cheaper brands don’t.
The Renoir brushes also perform extremely well for their price. At $4 and $6 (Australia) each I don’t mind replacing them more often but so far they are still working like new.
Bockingford paper is manufactured by St Cuthbert’S Mill makers of many of the top watercolour papers, and is very forgiving. It is heavily sized and takes a lot of punishment, can be wiped back or erased easily, but sometimes this can be problem as multiple layers can tend to lift if the paint is applied with too heavy a hand. I’ll continue to use it.