First Light

This is my painting from Melissa Gannon’s fifth class.

Gouache on Stonehenge Aqua Black Cold Pressed

This was actually my second try. It was a fairly difficult painting with such a dramatic sunrise. I did my first try in the journal I’ve made using watercolor on WSH150 Cold Pressed. It’s a watercolor paper that’s over 60 years old and you can’t really find paper of this quality any more. That said, I’m not used to those qualities and things don’t always come out the way I expect.

There are some things about this version that I like better, but I think the second version is better overall. Better composition and a tidier feel.

It was fun seeing the difference the paint and paper made.

Tomatoes in the Gloaming

Artwork: Zebra Zensations Technical pen, and colored pencil over watercolor on Hahnemühle Cézanne Hot Press.

Doodlewash Prompt: Tomatoes. Did you know the scientific name for tomato is Lycopersicon lycopersicum, which means wolf peach?

Gloaming is a word (more or less obsolete) for twilight or dusk. I’ve always loved it but it isn’t a word you often use.

This picture was an experiment. It was another painting that I washed away under the tap. The colors were too staining though and remained pretty bright. I decided to draw and then color my tomatoes with colored pencil. I looked at the result and immediately thought ‘it’s tomatoes seen in the gloaming after a rain’.

I still don’t really like the piece, but it’s more interesting than it was before and, at least I got to use the word gloaming, lol.


Hahnemuhle Cezanne Watercolor Block Cold Press (review)

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

Zebra Zensations Mechanical Colored Pencils

Black Pearl Pepper

Artwork: Daniel Smith watercolor on Hahnemühle Cézanne Hot Press. Photo reference courtesy of PublicDomainPictures on Pixabay.

Doodlewash Prompt: Red Pepper. I believe the variety shown in my painting is a Black Pearl pepper, which turn red when mature.

Did you know that the capsicum annuum is a fruit that is both male and female? It is known as Sweet Pepper, Cayenne Pepper, Chili Pepper, Christmas Pepper, Sweet Pepper, Cayenne Pepper, Chili Pepper, Christmas Pepper, Ornamental Chili Pepper, and Red Pepper.


Hahnemuhle Cezanne Watercolor Block Cold Press (review)

Daniel Smith watercolor:

Bokeh Butterfly

Have you entered my Giveaway for Hahnemühle Toned Watercolour Books?

This is my painting from Melissa Gannon’s fourth class.

Did you know that if you really don’t like a watercolor painting (and your paper is of a decent grade), you can run it under the tap and wash most of it away so you can use the washed out background for another painting? I had done that with a painting, and when I saw the reference photo for Melissa Gannon’s first class, I thought I would it for my preliminary painting.

But I liked it, and decided to just keep it and make this the finished painting.

I tried to get a bokeh effect on the upper wing. You know, where the light is so bright that some areas are out of focus and others are bright and clear? You see it a lot in photographs, and I love it. Not sure it worked here though.

And, of course, I went a little crazy with lavender. I think you are going to have to start calling me the lavender lady, lol.

Leaves of Living Stone

Artwork: Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and Daniel Smith watercolor in a Hahnemühle Nostalgie Sketchbook. Brush: Escoda Perla Round size 8, 10 and 12. Reference photo courtesy of derevv on Pixabay.

Doodlewash Prompt: Leaves

Lithiops are a succulent plant with leaves that look like pebbles, camouflage so that animals won’t eat them during the droughts of Southern Africa. They are called Living Stones, although they are totally plants.


Hahnemühle Nostalgie Book (review).

Daniel Smith Watercolor:

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

Joseph Zbukvic Watercolor Set No.1 Set of 3 Fine Artist Paint Brushes

Cherry Blossoms

Artwork – Holbein Gouache in a Hahnemühle Grey Book.

Doodlewash Prompt: Cherry Blossom

I was feeling rather unmotivated today, so I decided to just jump in and paint with out a reference photo or planning.

It was also a bit of an experiment. One of the issues (so I’m told) with gouache is that it can crack if painted too heavily on a flexible surface. I haven’t used it too much in sketchbooks or journals, so I decided to pile it on. I painted several layers using fresh paint, and you can both see and feel the brush strokes.

The paper curled, which was to be expected, but I knew the paper in my Hahnemühle Grey Book would flatten out afterwards. Once the paint dried, I literally rolled the paper into a tube and then smoothed it out. The paper has some dimpling but is now flat and there was no cracking of the gouache.

I’ll check it again in a week or two when the paint has had a chance to cure completely. This will give me a pretty good feel for what I can get away with in thickness of paint.

Hahnemühle Grey Book

Not listed online, you must ask about it

Joseph Zbukvic Watercolor Set No.1 Set of 3 Fine Artist Paint Brushes

Sunset in Fog

Artwork – Daniel Smith watercolor in a Hahnemühle Cappuccino Book. Photo reference courtesy of jplenio on Pixabay.

Doodlewash Prompt: Sunset

The moment I saw the prompt sunset, I knew the exact photo reference that I wanted to paint, and I knew my Cappuccino sketchbook (review) had the paper I wanted to use.

I used white gouache for the most intense light and I wish I had just used the color of the paper. It creates a beautiful subtle glow, but now I know!