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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

The Wonder of Watercolor

watercolor techniques2Our second son, Pasha, has artistic talent. We encourage him to develop and use his gifts. He’s creating some Mother’s Day art that’s rather beautiful and together, we wanted to see his watercolor technique grow.

I located a Russian watercolor artist online who explained her technique. Gathering the whole family, I insisted amidst moans and groans that we all watch a couple of her 7-minute videos. Some of the moans came from Pasha. But we pressed on.

They. were. mesmerized.

I never knew about the process of watercolor. Here’s my non-artistic take on the process, explained for drybrush2you, my faithful readers who probably know quite a bit more than I about these things.

1. Get some really hefty art paper, 140-lb. How a piece of paper can weigh that much, I have no idea, but at least I was paying attention.

2. Using a wide brush, paint some water over the paper in wide strokes. Wait a minute and do it again. Or, simply dampen the whole thing with a spray bottle, liberally spritzed and brushed over.

th3. We viewed a landscape and the artist washed the paper with color. If you start with the sky, mixing maybe a light blue-grey, the successive horizontal strokes across the paper descending downward should be water only (rinsing the brush and blotting on a paper towel). The water blurs any sharp lines and lends the soft, dreamy look that watercolors are all about.

4. If creating the ground, reverse the process to be darker from the ground, fading progressively with the wash of water as you move upward horizontally toward the center of the page.

5. Keep in mind that wet paint is darker than dry paint, so you may need to layer as it dries.watercolor-techniques

6. The paint is still damp if the page is cool to the touch.

7. Once the paper dries, you’re done. The watercolor will not work well on dry paper. Try to add water and everything is messed-up for good.

I never knew that the paper required water, but I would imagine that’s why they call it watercolor. I thought you added water to the brush. Now that I’m among the conoscenti, I understand that you also prep the paper with water.

Hope this helps! Go get a $1 watercolor set and give it a shot. Paint, splatter, blend—it’s time for some springtime creativity and color!

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