Friday, April 6, 2018


Sometimes when I review older watercolor sketches, I decide that they'd be improved by some "tweaking."
To help take my mind off an (unseasonable!) April 6 snowstorm, I pulled out of my stash of small paintings this one, of a clump of crocus. It had a somewhat flat, bland quality and I thought adding some deeper tones in the background might help, as well as adding more nuanced color to the blossoms.
As a way to bring the latter forward, I dampened some areas on a few of the petals. Then, I dropped in Quinacridone Magenta, and a few spots of Opera pink and let the colors blend by themselves.
After adding more color to the petals

I deepened the contrast by using more Dioxazine Violet in the central portions of each blossom. After dampening parts of the lower right of the paper, I dropped in a mixture of Sepia and Burnt Umber. While these colors blended, I used a dry-brush technique with Undersea Green and Green Gold in the middle background to suggest grass/foliage.

The last step was to suggest shadows on the flower stems, with several washes of Ultramarine Blue and Dioxazine Violet. Although these changes were not radical, I believe the result is a more lively painting.

"Harbinger of Spring"
5.5" x 7.5"
Available for purchase at my Daily Paintworks gallery