Category Archive: 2. Painting from observation

2.5 Assignment 2

Paint your final still life as your Assignment 2.  It should demonstrate your ability to represent observed details, your understanding of tone, colour and composition and the beginnings of your personal watercolour style.… Continue reading

2.4.5 Research : artists’ approach to domestic subjects

Look at artists’ approach to domestic subjects and their many and varied approaches to the still life. I have selected a few paintings by artists on still life or domestic subjects.  These show… Continue reading

2.4.4 Research : Different approaches to colour theory & painting

Choose two painters whose work in any medium you really like and respond to, but who use colour in different ways. Below is an extract of some of the detail noted with the… Continue reading

2.4.3 Exercise: Warm and cold colours

For this exercise use postcard-sized pieces of watercolour paper – paint little pictures using just a few colours and very little detail. Set up subjects which juxtapose warm and cold colours. 5 minutes… Continue reading

2.4.2 Exercise: Working with greys and browns

Exercise brief: Collect objects for a still life that are white, grey or mid-pale brown.  Don’t forget to take the colours of the background and floor or table surface into account; they need… Continue reading

2.4.1 Exercise: Still life with colourful objects

Paint a colourful a still life.  Try to include two different colour ideas: Find some objects with complementary colours – a green box and red apples, a violet cloth or ceramic and some… Continue reading

2.3.4 Research: Interiors

Look at paintings of interiors such as the work of the Dutch masters, Vermeer and Van Dyck, also look at Whistler’s interiors. Vermeer I have selected some paintings of interiors I like.  In… Continue reading

2.3.3 Exercise: Imaginary Rooms

Still using the wet-on-dry technique paint three imaginary rooms, aim to create a powerful atmospheric composition.  Imagine a room empty except for one or two large pieces of furniture in daytime and then… Continue reading

2.3.2 Exercise: Dramatic interiors

Using a room in your house choose a view through a doorway into a room or space which has a different level of light, either brighter or darker.  Start with a simple line… Continue reading

2.3.1 Exercise: Composition of an interior

Choose a view of an interior that has a large area of middle tone, a dark area and a very light area.  Sketch in the outlines of the main tonal areas. Lightly add… Continue reading

2.2.3 Exercise: Tones in several layers

This exercise is similar to the previous exercise but this time you can use multiple layers to achieve the range of tones. Compare : Place the two pictures (single and multiple layer method)… Continue reading

2.2.2 Exercise: Tones from a single layer

  Arrange a few household items as a still life, ensure they have a similar hue.  Draw a tonal composition.  Indicate the main tones by simple shading or cross-hatching.  Use a 7 step… Continue reading

2.2.1 Exercise: From light to dark the watercolour way

Make a tonal scale.  Paint it in a few different colours. On the A3 sheet I drew a series of squares in a line, leaving a space I placed a further two sets… Continue reading

2.1.3 Exercise: Adding line to watercolour

Fast and free water colour study and add line to enhance the painting after the watercolour pigment has dried.   Changing the subject matter from the last exercises I selected a rose.  Applying… Continue reading

2.1.2 Exercise: Pencil and watercolour

The instructions for this exercise call for two studies in pencil. a light outline drawing of the basic shapes of the chosen objects, keep the drawing simple. Repeat the exercise with a second… Continue reading

2.1.1 Exercise: Quick watercolour studies

Set up a simple arrangement of objects, divide up a large sheet and paint the arrangement quickly.  Try to capture local colour accurately and note the tones on and around the objects. Build… Continue reading