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Friday, March 16, 2018

Mini-peeks into my sketchbook! #1

I was recently asked to do a short article for Watercolor Artist magazine for a new column they've begun, Open Book (our friend Liz Steel was in this month's issue!)  They asked for 3-4 images to pick from, but will only use one in the magazine...and as usual I overproduced!  I came up with 9 images, but controlled myself and only sent, um, 5...or 6...

So I have leftovers to share with you!

This one was from a fall trip to Bennett Spring state park...I was wanting to explore wet in wet but with touches of gouache against that dark background to pop out and suggest a bit of depth.

I painted the dark, shadowed background hill, the warmer stream bank and the water first, and quicky laid in splashes of orange for the colorful tree and its reflection.  When those washes were dry, I painted the taller, darker oak tree, using a kind of quick, loose scrubbing motion to suggest foliage.

The dark trunks and limbs were added next, with a round brush and a small rigger brush, and allowed to dry.

Then I used my old friend spatter in watercolor and gouache, plus touches of pale green gouach on the bankside bushes.  An opaque gel pen made linear sparkles in the water...

Fast, fun, and I was satisfied with the effect, for the most part.

I'll add more of these as I get time...


  1. Can wait to read it! I love this image. The array of subtle color changes blows me away

    1. I don't know yet which image they'll choose from the ones I sent...this one I didn't end up sending, it didn't quite fit their parameters.

  2. I love the subtle blend of one color into another!

  3. Thank you for sharing.... beautiful!!


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