Saturday, July 19, 2008

"The Most Important Watercolor Class You'll Ever Take"

Watercolor Landscape - Foggy Lake
Watercolor on Strathmore Gemini 300-lb CP paper, 11 x 15" (27.9 x 38.1 cm).

My sister and I attended David R. Becker's workshop titled, "The Most Important Watercolor Class You'll Ever Take" on Friday, July 11, 2008. This is the second workshop I've taken from Becker (you may wish to view my posts from the 2007 workshop here and here). Like last year, the workshop was held at the Learning & Product Expo -- Art! event in Chicago.

The focus of the workshop was to learn to control wet-in-wet and wet-into-dry washes. We got started by just playing around with both techniques on a practice piece of Gemini paper. We did a second painting (the one pictured above), working from a photo reference given to us by Becker. The painting above is actually my second attempt; I wasn't happy with the first one so I re-painted it once I got home (I may even try it a third time with some new ideas for the sky; if so, I'll post that painting).

Like last year, all paints and brushes were supplied to us; Nevertheless, I brought my own brushes this year. I used the 1" flat brush (Stratford & York) supplied in the class, but used my own rounds for detail work. I must admit that I don't use flat brushes much at all, so I forced myself to use the 1" flat in order to get more experience using them exclusively in a painting. Two Styrofoam plates were used, one for a palette and one for mixing. Becker supplied us with ten Holbein pigments: permanent yellow light, scarlet lake, mars yellow, indian red, burnt umber, burnt sienna, permanent violet, prussion blue, peacock blue, and horizon blue. We worked on Strathmore Gemini 300-lb CP paper.

I really enjoyed the workshop; I learned much, and it was fun to see everyone else's results. At the end of the workshop, we displayed our finished paintings at the back of the room; Becker made a great point by saying that, even though we all used the same paints, brushes, and photo reference, the results were all unique.

I have more photos from the workshop posted here.

There's more stuff on my Flickr site: