Friday, 29 December 2017

It's a strange but true fact.......

..... the MORE you try to get something RIGHT in a painting



if you paint something WRONG

the more it looks


~ go figure ~

Monday, 16 October 2017

It has been a while since I posted a TIP AND TECHNIQUE

Here's a question somebody asked recently about skin tone

Question: "What colours do you use in watercolour for skin tones?"

For me, it is always BURNT SIENNA

(Winsor & Newton in my opinion have the best tone of this colour and 
I use it regularly.

In the above example I have tried to show the varying tones that can be achieved with clear water added.

(please note that some artists find other manufacturers just as good,
but in my humble honest opinion the W & N one wins hands down)


Thursday, 3 August 2017

Another technique for painting trees

Everyone has their own method for painting trees,
but getting started for some can be difficult.

Here's one of my techniques,
which in fact is used a great deal by watercolour artists, in the past Wesson and Seago used this style
and current days,  J. Bowden and John Hoar.

The technique is to add JUST SUFFICIENT PAINT to you brush, so as not to swamp it.
If you feel there is TOO MUCH pigment on the brush, then just wipe it
gently over a piece of tissue paper...WITHOUT REMOVING too much.
This all comes down to practise and getting
that 'Feel' for your paint brush.


 paint with the SIDE OF THE BRUSH, not the tip.

You are after a DRY BRUSH EFFECT without it being too dry.

Here's a quick demo showing you,
but in the end it all comes down to



Thursday, 22 June 2017

The packaging & Demo using Derwent Inktense Blocks

I've already mentioned Inktense blocks, and in this blog post I thought I would add a video using some.

In fact I have now got a set of 72, so lots of colours to play with.  Before I get to the video, let me show you the packaging of these blocks...

They are packaged in plastic trays,  one layer above the other...

 A good way to keep them, but lifting the top set of colours can be a little difficult.

They come with a cardboard separator, I have glued the cardboard to the bottom of the top set, 
that keeps the plastic tray firm -

Then I glued a piece of ribbon to the cardboard
which then makes a helpful handle to lift them out with.

Here's my quick demo using some of these colours.

When the ink dried, I then added some extra details...

Fun and easy to use.

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Warm and Cool tones in paintings

The balance of a painting....

This is part of a blog post I added a couple of years ago to my main blog (, but I thought it would be helpful here too.

Warm and Cool tones in paintings. 

My example is this sketch of Barnstaple bridge.

Pen + watercolour 
plus I added a small amount of detail with
my Sailor Calligraphy pen

Note:   The majority of this painting is in cool tones:

So to balance that out I added the warm red stripe on the boat.

Equally, if a painting is mainly warm tones,
then offset it with some COOL colours

It all helps the BALANCE of a painting.


Saturday, 15 April 2017

Making waves the simple way

First some watercolour...

Let this dry.  Then add a slightly Darker tone of the same colour, basically less water more pigment...

If you want more obvious Waves, then just emphasise the shape, 
as seen in the bottom part of the next example.

When completely dry 
add White GOUCHE -
I used a flat brush for this

There you go
Simple Waves


Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Derwent Inktense Blocks

Quick intro to Derwent Inktense Blocks

...I've had these for some time but only just got around to doing a colour swatch! 

These are INK in a block but can be used like watercolours - the best of both worlds if you ask me.

 (Inktense - Ink - intense colour = Inktense).

I've obviously got the tin with 12 colours, but do come in bigger packs with more colour choice.

The only thing I would say, they don't appear to have the colours named.
I have found a number on them though, so perhaps that's how Derwent deal with it.

I intend to do a demo using them soon.