Water Colour Painting
“Watercolor is tricky stuff, an amateur’s but really a virtuoso’s medium. It is the most light-filled of all ways of painting… It is hospitable to accident… but disaster-prone as well. One slip, and the veil of atmosphere turns into a muddy puddle, a garish swamp.”
— Art critic Robert Hughes in “Winslow Homer” in Time magazine, 1986
Working with water colours is hard work because it is extremely hard to control, hard to cover up mistakes, but lots of fun. Like water, water colour painting takes its own path and is a beautiful, fluid way to use the imagination to express yourself.
Brush Techniques to Help You Get Started
The Classic Grip | Getting to Know Your Brush
This grip is similar to the way you would hold a pencil or a pen for writing but you hold the brush higher up than you would a writing instrument. Get used to the way it feels, how heavy it is and how you can manoeuvre it. Play with it and try to write your name with a fluid-like motion, the way you would like to see it expressed on your paintings.
One of the benefits of the classic grip is that it gives you control over linear drawing lines. It is also useful for Pointillism, where you can create different layers, dot by dot. It is also a useful technique for cross hatching.
The Pinch Grip | Mastering Your Brush
Pick your bursh up and hold it between your thumb and fingers- pinch it. you can decide how many fingers you want to use for this grip, 2, 3, or 4. This grip is best for vertical strokes but you will it difficult to control the width of your strokes sometimes. You will notice how you do not have the pressure to create a consistent wash and the stroke gives you an interesting texture to play with.
When moving the brush sideways you will notice the different textures the stroke offers you to explore with. You may also find the brush’s resistance to upward strokes an interesting technique to experiment with.