Drawing in the Garden with Watercolour

I’ve been sitting outside my studio in the sunshine, playing with some watercolour and acrylic ink, looking at these little cheerful flowerswith tiny suns in their centre.

lawn daisies in watercolour and ink
lawn daisies in watercolour and ink

The two watercolour greens I’m using are Daniel Smith Serpentine green, which is a granulating green speckled with earthy reds, and Undersea green, which is a mixture of granulating French ultramarine with Quinacridone Gold (PB 29, PO 48, PY 150). This photo shows these colours in my DIY ‘watercolour ink’ bottles, how the colours separate when they’ve been standing a while (remixing just takes a little shake) .

If you look at the top-right sketch be low, the dark lines at the top are where I applied the watercolour using the pipette onto dry paper, then used a brush to spread. The darkest aspects of the colour have stained the paper, and don’t shift even with a lot of water (though it might if I scrubbed at it with a stiff brush). This is something I want to explore further.

lawn daisies in watercolour

I’ve also been using fluid watercolour to sketch the rose hedge (which is still growing out after its early spring haircut). Starting with a background of undersea green (done the day before because I’d overfilled the bottle and had to use some up before I could screw the lid on!), I used some shadow violet (a mixture of orange and ultramarine) to draw the initial layer of rose stems.

I then added greens for the emerging leaves, some of the creeping buttercup leaves and grass at the base, and some haematite for another colour on the stems.

After this had dried, I started adding a layer of pencil to create some definition on the leaves (don’t have a photo of this). I didn’t get all the way across the painting with the pencil as it was testing my patience so I stopped rather than mess it up.

I also spent a little time just lining up my bottles with the sun behind them, taking some photos and enjoying the colours.

Left to right: New Gamboge, Aussie Red Gold, Potter’s Pink, Serpentine Green, Undersea Green, Shadow Violet.

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