Sunday, 18 October 2015

 Traveling a small watercolour set and a good brush opens the opportunity to work just about anywhere.  In September I was the presenter for three days at the "Master Artist in the Library" event here in town.  Armed with a small bag of pebbles, and my trusty 12 colour watercolour set,
I painted these little guys

Each is about 3" x 5", on  5" x 7" precut watercolour paper.  I tend to travel with sheets rather than blocks if I am painting inside.  The blocks are great when painting outdoors, the wind does not catch at the sheets and I find the paper dries out more quickly outside, so there is more wetting needed.

I generally don't use resist, relying instead on marking key points in a very lightly wash before defining shapes more heavily.  I like how this lets the compositions enfold and breathe rather than being tightly drawn beforehand with pencil.


  1. Lovely! (I found your blog through Daily Paintworks.) I was wondering: do you set the sketchbook on your lap when working this way or do you have a special easel set up? Perhaps you started outside and then finished from a photo back home?

    I ask because I'm reaching out to more plein air painters about their work and gear. I want to build a more flexible set up - drawing / painting tools that will work both inside and out. But I get lost when looking at all of the possibilities!

    1. Hi there, sorry for the delay in replying. Being unused to computers, I did not see your comment until just now. I almost always set up the arrangements on a table and try to work directly in front of it. This way the 'left/right, up/down of the composition correlates to the work . If I have to move the composition, I will set it up on a cookie sheet, so that I can move it intact. I started using photos for the first time on the outdoor stuff after trying plein air. It really does require a whack load of equipment, which, I agree, are onerous. A neighbour and friend of mine (since passed away) did much plein air. Try his site which is still active for tips on this subject.