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Watercolor For the Real Beginner

by Nelson Rivera
(Ponce.Puerto Rico)

There have been many books written on this subject but most of them fail to emphasize on things like:

- Color mixing (which color does what)
- What color is the best for reproducing shadow (I've seen cobalt blue but also light violet)
- What is the best set up for painting on the go.

I like to draw but find it hard to paint what I draw because I end up shading my drawings before painting. Is there a tip to not do this in order to have a cleaner painting?

Thanks for the patience, I am really a rookie.

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Oct 22, 2015
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Oct 14, 2008
.shadows
by: Mary Ann

Nelson,

Shadows are not just one color. Grays are made of red, yellow and blue. If the object casting the shadow is red, then there will be more red in the shadow because of the reflected light from the red object.

Keep your shadows interesting by dropping in color and allowing it to mix on the paper without brushing the color back and forth. If you brush the color back and forth, it will turn a dead grey.

Liven your paintings with color and you will see the excitement it creates in the viewer.

Check out this page: http://watercolorblog.artistsnetwork.com

The image was painted without drawing. Color was my focus...and it won an award for me. This is just for the month of Oct. 2008, so it won't be seen once someone else wins next month.

As far as colors, please go to this page on this website: http://www.watercolor-painting-tips.com/color-harmony.html

There are exercises that you can do to find the colors that you like best. I hope you will find this helpful.

Oct 14, 2008
Washes and highlights
by: Mary Ann

Marlise,

A wash is simply any application of wet color. It can be wet in wet (paint applied to wet paper) or wet on dry paper. It is my belief that Robert Tilling applies his color to slightly damp paper. The edges are soft, but controlled. If you wet your paper, then allow it to dry so that it loses its shine, then you are ready to apply heavier pigment without losing control of the flow of color.

He, like most watercolorists, starts with the light and bright colors first, (yellows and reds), then he adds the blues while they are still damp, thereby creating the grey color.
When the painting is dry, he can then add the crisp edged mountains or landscape in the background. When every part of the painting is dry, it is possible that he carefully masks the area (perhaps with tape) around the light line at the horizon, and then, with a damp brush, or cloth, wipes out the color. When the tape is removed, there is a thin light line with crisp edges across the surface.

I hope this has been helpful to you.


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