Painting Facebook Photos 7

"Ella, the Biker" 11"x 14" watercolor

When I saw this photo of Ella, I chuckled. The “slow” sign did it. She is probably not old enough to read, but I don’t think she would care if she could. The sign obviously doesn’t apply to her.

Some paintings, like “Friendly Feet”,  I paint in pieces.  I sit at my painting table and apply the paint in a “paint by number” style. I painted each shoe and ankle separate from the other. It gives a crisp, bright feel to the image. With this little biker, I wanted to show lots of movement so I stood up to paint. I wet the paper on both sides to saturate the fibers and stuck it to a piece of  plexi-glass. I used a large brush to apply lots of paint, allowing the watercolor pigment to swim together on the surface of the paper. As the paper dries, I add sharper and darker details by using thicker paint. I used this same method to paint Hagar, the dog.

Now on to #8 in the Painting Facebook Friends series. This one warms my heart.

4 thoughts on “Painting Facebook Photos 7

  1. I love this one, Suzie! Very vibrant, just glows. Your description of the process with the paper reminds me of a workshop I had in Vienna where the teacher had us use a watered-down wallpaper paste to adhere very thin watercolor paper to a board. Then her technique was VERY wet., bringing in more details later. With your use of a plexi-glass board, does that negate the need for the paste? Is your paper really thin so that it will friction fit with lots of water?

  2. Thank you, Sylvia! I don’t use any paste. The paper is wet, like a blanket and sticks to the plexi in a way like a piece of wet cardboard. I use Arches 140# rough watercolor paper. You should give it a try. Wet both sides of the paper and stick it to a piece of glass, plexi or even a metal cookie sheet. I even have used a board with a plastic garbage bag over it. Blot off all the excess water from the front with an absorbent cloth or paper towels. Start painting! If you want to draw on the paper, you have to do it before you wet it. Have fun!

  3. One more question: what happens after the paper dries? Does it continue to cling to the plexiglass, or at that point are you ready to do the old tape job?

  4. Sylvia, I love your questions! After the paper dries, the painting falls off the plexi and usually only some very fine details are added. Nothing major. I sometimes paint using tape around the paper if I don’t use this wet method, but for the most part I leave the paper loose and use two clips to hold it to the board. To flatten it out to frame it (or photograph it) I soak the back of the paper for about five minutes, blot off the water with an absorbent cloth, then place it between a sheet of plexi and foam core and put a stack of books on top for several hours or overnight. The foam core pulls out the moisture, allowing it to dry super flat. You could use two sheets of foam core or even cardboard. This allows me to frame using a floating technique so the edges of the paper are seen and I kind of like that.
    I haven’t used this wet method for plein air, but I’m looking forward to it. I’d love to have you tell me if you try this on your watercolor paper.

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