Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Painting Grasses and Weeds and Slender Leaves

Since I have a lot of photos with grasses, weeds, and slender leaves in them, I have been playing around with different ways of depicting  them with watercolors. Here are some of the results and the tools I used.
I began by making a puddle of mostly paint and a little water. Then I made upward strokes with a fan brush that I have cut with a small pair of scrapbooking scissors to make the bristles irregular, more like grasses are in nature. Then I used a rigger, also called a liner to add a few dark green lines.
This time I used a No. 12 Richeson Professional 7000 to paint a swatch of strong burnt sienna. After the swatch was a trifle less wet, I scraped out thin leaves with the edge of the palette knife. If I had scraped immediately with the palette knife, the wet paint would have filled the lines creating darker leaves than the background swatch.
First came the ragged fan brush with lots of paint on it. Then when there were a lot of fine leaves, I used the palette knife turned somewhat flat and scraped out wide leaves. I used the rigger to darken the background between the leaves so the leaves would be more prominent.
This time I painted a variegated wash using lots of paint and only a little water. I scraped in some lines when the paint was very wet and other lines when the paint was drier.

If you click on any of the examples, you can see them in a larger size.

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