Friday, 24 February 2017

Watercolour paper test

I have tried out one of the sample pieces of paper supplied by Hahnemuhle - Akademie "Britannia" 300 gsm rough.  The paper has quite a pronounced ribbed texture which didn't really suit my way of working as wet in wet washes tended to settle, exaggerating that texture.  For someone working looser and on a larger scale this might not present a problem.  The watercolour washes remained quite vibrant and the paint did not sink into the paper, so washing out or lightening areas was easily achieved.  It might be worth trying out inks or fluid acrylics on another of these samples.

Watercolour on "Britannia" rough - 6.5" x 9"

Monday, 20 February 2017

Hahnemuhle Black Book

I have now had a chance to try out different media in the Hahnemuhle Black Book.


At the top, I have printed two of my foam stamps, plus two Softcut images - all using white gesso.  Once dry, the first three images were coloured with acrylic inks, the fourth with metallic and coloured pencils.  All these were successful.

Bottom left, is coloured pencil - I think the "tooth" of the paper worked well here.  I expect pastel will  be good too.

Bottom right - gouache.  At 120 lbs the paper is quite sturdy and there was no problem using wet media.

A nice paper to work with.

Monday, 13 February 2017

Hahnemuhle goodies

On Friday I received a nice big parcel from the German papermakers Hahnemuhle.  I had applied for their recently advertised free samples, but having liked what they saw on my blog they offered me some further supplies to review.  So now I shall have to set to and try them out.

Ten large sheets of Bamboo paper, a watercolour pad and a Black Book, plus some extras -
all tastefully wrapped in red tissue,  it's just like Christmas!

Sunday, 12 February 2017

The Big Painting Challenge

For those of you in the UK, one of our local art group members (David White) is participating in this BBC One programme tonight (6 - 7 pm) - this is a series of six programmes.  Despite repeated "grilling" he has refused to reveal how he got on.

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Snowdrops and A Grand Day Out




Earlier this week, we had a stunning day out at the Rococo Gardens at Painswick.  Sun and snowdrops aplenty.

Journal page 6" x 4"
The Red House, Painswick Rococo Gardens (6" x 4")
A quick on-site pencil sketch, with pen and watercolour added later

Thursday, 2 February 2017

A fold booklet

A few days ago I tried out some acrylic printing with handmade foam stamps on an A3 sheet of black paper.  At the time I had no plan on how to use it, but subsequently decided to try out a simple fold structure.

Foam stamps, acrylic and inks


Folding and cutting template - an A3 sheet produced a 4" x 6" booklet
Once folded, the printed area formed the inside 8 pages, but the front and back were the reverse of the sheet and, therefore, blank.  I decorated those pages and added some rose-related quotes on the inside.

Outside cover


Inside of booklet
I was quite pleased with the outcome, although a slightly thicker paper might have been better - this was 135 gsm.

Friday, 27 January 2017

Collage and ink resist continued ...

Following on from my last post, the Indian ink was washed off under running water and stretched onto a board.  The first surprise was that the gouache had not protected the white gesso stamped pattern on the left, in fact the ink had soaked into the gesso making that area rather dark.

"The reveal" after a visit to the sink
Next, I tried out various painted papers to see which would be suitable for the collage elements.  I took quite a few photos during the whole process so it was possible to compare the different layouts on my computer screen.  In addition, I started to repaint the work as much of the original watercolour gets lost during the washing process.

One of the trial runs with collage
The collage on the fruit bowl and the border behind it has been decided and most of the repainting completed (below).  In an attempt to tone down the patterned left hand side I overpainted with white gouache, but this did nothing to improve matters.


Trying to tone down the lefthand side

After letting things sit overnight I felt I had to wash off the gouache and try something else.  In my paper stash I found a piece of peach coloured printed tissue and this served to act as a veil over the offending pattern. With the addition of another couple of small collage elements, I think that's as far as I will go with this particular piece, but it might be worth exploring this style further.

The collage papers used are shown on the right hand side


The Ridgefield Pot - watercolour, gouache, ink and collage
Approx 8" x 8" on Arches not 140lb