Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Practice makes Perfect

Or so they say! I have been painting and drawing Blackberries, my earlier painting on this subject was one that I took along to the Society of Floral Painters Exhibition in Wiltshire for some critique, and the comments regarding this painting made me realise that I need to take things slower and study my subject more before jumping in with pencil and paper. It has been a slow transition from painting landscape images where you have a great deal of artistic licence to having to portray a subject exactly, and due to back problems I have had a lot of time to practice, so here is one of my blackberry's.

The painting is life size about 25 x 30 mm painted from photographs and sketches I used for my original painting back in September. Painted in watercolour an Arches HP paper, I use the lifting out technique for  the highlights so I have to be careful what pigments I use when mixing the colours to avoid colours that are to opaque and also staining, the mix I use for the black is French Ultramarine, Alizarin Crimson and Raw Siena, This mix will lift out even after it has dried. The same mixture and technique also works on black grapes and the results are very affective. If you are into painting fruit give this a go and I think you will be pleased with the results.


  1. I enjoy seeing your work. I don't know anything about painting so I am sure the group would be appalled at my work. I do just the opposite, starting with the lightest color and adding the darker as I go along. However that might be hard on a piece so small. I am impressed.

  2. McMGrad89.

    What you are doing is correct, in water-colour you should always work from light to dark however there are always exceptions to the rule and the lifting out technique only works with certain colours as some pigments stain the paper and only Artist quality watercolours are consistent but this technique is used a lot in botanical illustration. and don't be afraid to show your work we are our worst enemy when it comes to judging our own work. As long as the comments are constructive then they are good.