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New Winsor & Newton Watercolor Paper Part 2: Classic Cold Press

Before doing my watercolor demo at Wet Paint on April 7, 2018 I had to test the “Classic” cold press sample I’d been given. I feel that “Classic” is a bit confusing as names go. To me that sounds like “traditional,” or “original.” While I don’t drink Coca Cola, it sounds like Coke Classic and […]

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Mixed Media—Working Loose When Your Ink Runs

It can easily happen to anyone at any time—you do a really cool ink sketch, get the watercolors (or other water-based medium) out, start to paint, and watch as the ink color dissolves from the line and spreads into your paint. This bothers a lot of my students. I’ve even heard them gasp, cry out, […]

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Just Try It: Pushing a Drawing Beyond Finished

How do we make decisions, fast decisions, when sketching out in the field? By making decisions during practice, and comparing results. Some people can hold two versions of a piece in their mind and weigh what the future work will look like.  For artists just starting out there might seem to be too many possibilities.  […]

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New Winsor & Newton Watercolor Paper Debut at Wet Paint

Mark your calendars. Saturday, April 7, 2018 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. there will be painting demonstrations to celebrate the release of the new Winsor & Newton Watercolor paper at Wet Paint, in St. Paul MN. The first 100 attendees will receive a free 22 x 30 inch sample sheet of this 140 lb. […]

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Hahnemühle Watercolor Sketchbook Review: Part 3

Today is the final part of my three-part review on the Hahnemühle Watercolor Sketchbook. See Part One of the review here. See Part Two of the review here In today’s post I wanted to write about the book structure itself. I’ll then wrap up with a final comment about the paper quality. Binding and Covering […]

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Hahnemühle Watercolor Sketchbook Review: Part 2

This is part two of a three part series on the Hahnemühle Watercolor sketchbook. Please click on this link to read part 1. Today I am going to look at two aspects of paper response in this watercolor sketchbook. These techniques are important to me and therefore I select books containing paper which can handle […]

Platinum Carbon Black ink fountain pen sketch with watercolor washes. This page was taped off with Nichiban masking tape. The tape removed cleanly. As mentioned in the text the paper buckles from the watercolor application—this is clearly see at the top of the scan where the page is wavy even when placed weighted on the scanner. I made this sketch later in my use of the book and am starting to grow accustom to water usage on the paper. The cold press texture of the paper allows interesting puddles of paint when using sedimentary colors like Azure blue. Mixing colors on the page is possible because of the quality of the sizing and the flow it promotes. (I was testing a palettes of new colors for this sketch.)

Hahnemühle Watercolor Sketchbook Review: Part 1

Today I’m going to begin a three part review of the Hahnemühle Watercolor Sketchbook. I suggest that you read all three parts before purchasing. I will write more about this in a moment. This sketchbook was released in 2017. I purchased two in the summer of 2017 but was unable to work in them until […]

Here's a closer look at those dirty washes.

In Context: Dirty Brushes

In general I like to start a work session with clean brushes. Which means you want to end a session by cleaning your brushes. Sometimes when I’m sketching out and about there isn’t enough water in my water brush to flush out the bristles. I find that I would rather paint something than worry too […]

Here is a detail of the sketch showing a bit of lifting around the nose.

A Couple More Thoughts on Green and Flat Brushes

I wanted to show another green-based watercolor I worked on last year while I was testing the Hahnemühle Watercolor Sketchbook. (A review with lots of details about that paper and the binding of that sketchbook will appear in a couple weeks.)  Today’s image was created mostly with watercolor flats. I went in with round brushes […]

After completing a quick sketch with a solid fiber-tipped brush pen I picked up my 1 inch flat watercolor brush and added in washes on this piece.

Play with Different Brushes as Well as Different Pigments: More Green

I have been using a lot of green lately, so I’m not finished with my green series yet! While sketching the image shown today I used a 1 inch flat to apply the watercolor. Flats are great fun because you can turn them on edge and get lines, and you can touch the corner of […]

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