Friday, July 6, 2012

More for Sanchez 50-50...

Things at home are a little chaotic here and I am quite distracted from the progress of the Sanchez 50-50 project by some bad health news from family member. There are a few pieces for the show whirling around in the studio, but frankly speaking I am far from happy with them. This new effort started well and we'll see where it is going... In the mean while, how is everyone else enjoying their summer?

Purple Hibiscus, 
Watercolor on Arches 140# Cold Press Paper, 6"h x 6"w, WIP 1

Painting a variegated dark background around a light flower subject can be tricky -- I usually don't use any masking agent since my limited experiments with it always seem to roughen up the paper surface, and I don't quite like the hard edge it leaves all around the flowers. Since wetting a large area in the background with complicated edges can take a lot of time, it's hard to maintain the entire background equally wet for a successful application of wet-in-wet. What I have learned is to use the flower to break up the background space into unconnected pieces, thus giving each piece a chance to be able to be painted separately, buying time for myself in execution. For larger connected areas, I look for narrow passages as "stopping points", such as the narrow area left to the bud on the left on the flowers, and the area right to the right-most tip of leaves. I will wet the area on each side of this narrow "mouth" separately, let clear water run a little bit pass the mount and into the adjacent area, but not flowing paint beyond it. This way, the entire background seem to connect into a coherent flow without any discernible hard edge in its soft passages, and allow the viewer's eye travelling around without much effort. What is your trick? Please share!


  1. Hello Arena:) Ha, I wish I had some tricks to share with you! I'm sorry I haven't. I'm not near the level you are. I learn a lot from you! This hibiscus is going to be beautiful. Thank you for showing the steps!

  2. Hello Arena!Your work is always outstanding!By the way I share my way to ...
    For a longer time working on a background, I use a damp piece of tyvek, placed on a tray, I put on the watercolor and go with the color that goes out with some control, dabbing advance the points where you do not want to go the color, or lighten the colors with a brush without color ...
    Wet both sides of the paper gives a result already good, but having a wet tissue underneath, now that's hot, for example, facilitates this work.When you get the work done , you put it on the wooden board, eliminating wet tissue(or wet tissue-paper) and tray ,for dry!I hope you like it!

    1. Thanks Rita for sharing your tricks! I will definitely try it out!

  3. Arena, I am sorry about your family news.
    As for tips, I really don't have any - the atmosphere is usually cool and moist enough that it's not too much of a problem. I can get away with wetting the entire area.
    And your hibiscus is looking wonderful!


Thank you so much for taking time visiting and commenting on my blog! Your feedback and encouragements are things that keep me going with I am feeling down or frustrated... I will try my best to reply to every comment ASAP but sometimes life gets in the way and I am a bit slow in my response. I would like to apologize if that happens...

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...