Topic: Lesson 1 - Watercolor Botanicals, Your Questions

Hi friends, I created this thread for all your questions regarding the lesson 1 (Watercolor botanicals). Feel free to comment here, ask anything that might still puzzle you about the technique. I’d also love to hear how your paintings turned out :) Jane
L v
I wanted to thank you, Jane, for this workshop. Because of my work schedule, and these classes dropping on Mondays, I don't get to try the exercises until the weekend after. So I haven't had a chance to paint yet, but I have watched the video several times. It is *packed* with information! No major questions at this point, except I'm presuming you brush off that salt after it's dry, right?
Hi Lisa, many thanks for your comment and letting me know that you find it useful :) Take your time to paint along when you have time. To answer your question, yes I do brush it off after it's dry, I thought I've mentioned that somewhere :) It is not a mistake if you don't, it will fall off anyway as you use your sketchbook. Hope to see your works when you're finished with some studies, you can post photos here :)
Thank you Jane for this wonderful workshop. You are an excellent teacher and I am thoroughly enjoying going through the process with you! I have painted the dandelions and the sunflowers and will tackle the poppies next. I didn't have alcohol when I made my first dandelion attempt, so used a paper towel to whiten the circles. I attempted the dandelions again with alcohol, but did not get the same results as you. My circles remained dark which makes me think my paper wasn't wet enough... How does the alcohol work with the paint? The first photo is with the paper towel and the second is alcohol. Thanks again! Trisha
Hi Tricia, thank you for your comment, and I just love seeing your finished works! I have to say, your sunflowers look amazing, those turned out just like they were supposed to - I hope this can inspire you to do more studies of similar flowers, same technique just different subjects. I also like both your dandelions and it is interesting that paper towel technique worked better than alcohol. You asked how alcohol works, it needs to be applied to a wet wash of paint and the drop pushes the wet pigment aside - this is how the light zone (dandelion head) happens. If pigment is already dry or when pigment had enough time to soak into paper, than alcohol doesn't really do much. Try using it again next time (for a background effect, for example) in this way and hope it works for you. It can be a really fun technique. I am looking forward to see your poppies :)
L v
Hi Jane, Actually, you did mention to just brush off the salt--in the written instructions. I spotted that later. The alcohol is interesting. I'll bet it's very useful in laying in clouds in a sky (something new for me to try, clouds can be so hard to get natural). This class is really amazing in the number of techniques and styles you cover! I am downloading the instructions and references so I can practice over time. A lot to learn and try! Here are my poppies. I spent most of my focus on the red one, the pink and yellow could use more attention.
L v
ACK! I oriented the picture before uploading, and it still came out sideways!
Hi Lisa, your poppies are lovely, I am glad you're enjoying the class and hope to see your landscape demos painted as well :) See you soon!
Behind, as usual. I was going to start this on the 6th and work along with you, but life happened. I have managed to watch all four lesson videos, however, and hope to get started painting tomorrow. I have been meaning to learn how to actually use watercolors for a while now, I tend to use them to add a splash of color in my sketches, usually using a waterbrush, but am not what could be termed a watercolorist. I am glad for the chance to add to my skillset. I was wondering, why do you use so many colors? The 48 pan set seems enormous to me, and adding another dozen tube colors -I would be completely confused. I tend to work with about 8-10 colors, usually, and mix what I want. I noticed you were mixing in the videos, too, despite the large selection of colors at your disposal. Below is the set of cheap watercolors I plan to use to try these techniques out. I do have better ones available, but it has been so long since I have done any painting that I would start with the disposable set. It is just a standard kids set of eight, with the addition of a magenta and sky blue (and an added yellow, because I ran out of the original).
Hi, Robin, to answer your question regarding the materials I use in the workshop, my goal with this class was to show a wider variety of techniques, but also variety of materials. Different people have different materials at their disposal, so I worked with different setups in every exercise - to show how to work with smaller as well as with larger color palette. I am glad that your watercolor setup works for you, and I hope you'll have fun doing the exercises suggested in the class.