Friday, July 27, 2012

Horseback Riding in the Sicilian Countryside – Watercolor

In a previous post featured a step-by-step watercolor painting of a girl on horseback with a white background.  I got a good comment about that and decided to go ahead and paint in a background.  (Thanks, Timothy!) 
Unlike oil, acrylic, gouache, or pastel, watercolor takes a bit more pre-planning.  The whites have to be painted around or left unpainted.   I rarely use maskit and never use gouache for highlights when I paint.  If a painted area needs to be lightened I actually scrub the spot with clear water and lift pigment off by blotting with a paper towel. – quite painstaking and time-consuming.  And the area can never be brought back to pure white.  That’s why planning ahead and lots of practice pay off!

There is a trick I have heard about but never dared to try.  Years ago I read an article by Steve Hanks where he told of dropping a little bleach on the paper in an area that needed to be whitened then quickly following it with baking soda to neutralize and deactivate the bleach.  Any of you watercolorists tried that?