Tuesday, 3 December 2013

'Looking Towards Meadfoot from Hope's Nose'

Now there's a title for a painting! Well, it wasn't me who named this part of the Torbay coastline. I painted this as a demonstration for Totnes Art Society, three weeks ago. 'Seascapes' was the requested topic, so this is what I did for them. Demo' paintings are always a challenge. Just two hours, from blank canvas (paper for a watercolourist), to last brush stroke... with the all-important tea break in the middle.
I was quite pleased with the way this one turned out, particularly the ripples on the water. I began with a pencil outline, followed by a 'controlled wash'* over the whole sheet. When it was dry, the painting was finished in a series of washes.

*This term was used by the late, great Jack Merriott (1901-1968) who was a master of watercolour and oil. His book, Discovering Watercolour, is long out of print. However, there are many copies around and it can usually be found on a well-known online store for just a few pounds. For anyone who is serious about learning the art of watercolour painting, it is a must have. The controlled wash then, is achieved by working in one over-all wash across the entire surface, to create 'a nebulous atmosphere in harmony with the scene'. This is then allowed to dry completely, before finishing the painting with one or two washes working from light to dark. Turner also used this technique to great effect but, as far as I know, it was Jack Merriott who put this name to it.