Green Gold is a watercolor that begins on October 21, 2011 and ironically, is completed on the same day of a different month, two years later, April 21, 2013. Of course that is not to suggest work proceeded 365 days a year! This was more an “on again, off again,”project with intermittent painting time throughout that time period.
Briefly, here is the 10 step approach to the creation of this watercolor:
- Watercolor painting starts outdoors. Easel at about a 45 degree angle.
- Work begins directly on blank sheet of paper. No value plan. No pencil outline.
- The initial thought process is that of a non-objective painting.
- Bold, assured shapes are painted using a green mix of Hansa Yellow & Thalo Blue.
- Paint is allowed to blend, and drip. Several dry layers allowed to overlap.
- Tree forms evolve. Non-objective approach becomes abstract landscape.
- Switch to a smaller, flat watercolor brush (two-inch).
- Orange sky painted around tree forms using Hansa Yellow and Permanent Alizarin Crimson.
- A Webb liner brush and black pen add details, tree trunks, limbs, water ripples, etc.
- A dark value watercolor mix of Permanent Alizarin Crimson & Thalo Green are the final two layers.
I find much enjoyment in beginning a watercolor painting in a bold, loose, non-objective manner. It’s true that one of watercolor’s glories is its willingness to blend, mix, splatter, and drip. If left to its own devices watercolor can become a valued ally in the creative process.
All that remains is a title. Tree growth in an environment like Sacramento is an extremely valuable shade source, providing much appreciated relief during hot, summer days. Thus, Green GOLD!