"Quality Street I" - Watercolour - 6x9"

 Quality Street, Whangarei, NZ


Got me old watercolours out today for something completely different and found out how rusty I am with these wee Jimmies (you can tell by the amount of gouache spread over my mistakes). Maybe my old paper was too absorbent but I really noticed how quickly the colour lost its power as it dried, and I also felt like a bit of a clutz using these beautiful soft brushes which are so much more expressive than the hardy bristle brushes I use for oils.


I'm going to play around with these for a while I think and see what happens. I was looking at Alvaro Castagnet's work and really enjoyed the sketchy freedom he achieves and his bold colour choices so I did a bit of borrowing from his style in this little sketch and let me tell you he makes it look a LOT easier than it is! Still, this is only the first quick dip back in the shallow end of the watercolour pool. Had fun with it. Hope you're having fun too.


All the best,


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Comment by Helen Tyralik on June 25, 2011 at 19:34

Like this work Richard, wish i was as rusty as you ,but i still have trouble with watercolors, maybe one day.


Comment by Richard Robinson on June 5, 2011 at 10:36
Thanks Gary, yeah I feel like I've learned a lot from this that I can now apply in my oil paintings - soft edges mainly, and again, easing off on the detail where it's not necessary. Thanks Val for posting your early watercolours too - good to see! (They look a lot like my first ones). Oh, there's no time limit on my downloads either - I think you asked that question on another page. I do recommend using the FTP download if you know your internet connection will be broken during download. With FTP it resumes where it left off previously.
Comment by Val on June 4, 2011 at 0:14

Right you are Richard...I cringingly posted some earlier watercolours!


Comment by Gary Odmark on June 2, 2011 at 3:55
Richard,  Nice loose but precise painting.   I really like the use of the complimentary colors.  I feel to be a full fledged artist one has to work in many different mediums.   Was tickled to see you doing this.   Also it shows off your artistic touch.   Got turned on by still lifes lately.  Love going to the store to pick out models.   Grapes, onions, plums etc.   Fun to paint like some of the old masters.....  I do a black and white study with the values and also the highlights.   Then let them dry and come back with some fine oil  glazes.   Really seems to make the objects come to life.    I think you will find the watercolors a nice change.  I jumb around like that to keep fired up about painting.  Acrylics are a fun alternative also.  Keep up the nice work.   Gary W. Odmark
Comment by Richard Robinson on June 1, 2011 at 16:42

Thanks Merewyn, I've got similar bottles of schmincke airbrush inks here waiting to be tested - pretty potent colours alright.


Comment by Merewyn Heath on June 1, 2011 at 16:14
Nice - wow! Love that about watercolor - every stroke and wash reveals the artist's touch. In my opinion, it's 1/2 finesse. I like Castagnet's paintings very much. The paintings of people feel as if it's a peek into a moment -such immediacy. Regarding the color vibrance - I resorted to using liquid inks for emphasis at one point in time. For posters or commercial work - these seemed to hold up best. Admittedly, it isn't as much of a purist approach - so a trade off there. It appears that company also makes concentrated watercolors that might hit the mark. So fun! :)
Comment by Richard Robinson on May 31, 2011 at 22:23
Ha! Thanks Val. You never know. Better do more than one watercolour first though eh.
Comment by Val on May 31, 2011 at 22:02

I think its marvellous..mistakes and all! I'm still trying to make the paint stay where I want it. Great fun although a bit frustrating at times. Will you be doing any courses with watercolour?

Cheers, Val


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