Andrew Geeson Watercolour Wet in Wet 26 January 2016
Our first demonstration in 2016 was a great success with local artist Andrew Geeson demonstrating his way of working wet in wet in watercolour, which gives an impressionistic finish to his work. Andrew developed his technique following years as an illustrator working realistically he lost his love of painting and to regain this he developed a looser, more exciting style of working.
1401b Not paper is a medium weight paper, it gives Andrew a little movement when wet which suits his style or working. Windsor & Newton’s artist and student quality paints also give the best pigment solution, as the student quality paints have less pigment in and are more easily blended. Only two brushes are used – a big one and a little one – the big one being a size 16 which holds plenty of water, and the little one a rigger for the finer details. A flat palette and two pots of water in clear cups (to see how murky the water is) and kitchen roll to soak up excess are the only other things that Andrew needs to produce his paintings.
Using a mount and drawing around the inside gives a ‘frame’ to work within. Andrew says there are three things to achieving a loose picture:
- A loose drawing
- Loose application of paint
- Loose interpretation of the colour of the object – not too much detail and make the colours lighter or darker than the original which gives more freedom.
So first the loose drawing, lightly sketching using dots and broken lines to get the basic structure of the painting down outlining the areas for pigment to fall within, it was essential that the lines weren’t straight, and it provided a snapshot of information and not too much detail.
Using the big brush first and giving consideration as to where the light source was coming from, working in water only in a circular motion where points of colour would go on the painting and using broken lines (don’t cover the whole area leave some dry). Then working from dark to light Andrew first used Lemon Yellow to drop colour onto the lighter areas. He followed this with Golden Ochre then Cerulean Blue to drag across for the flower heads. Limited control was used just place the brush down and let the water go – don’t paint! For the greens, Sap Green and Perylene Green.
Using a rolled up tissue torn off at the end just dab to lift off excess water. Then use the rigger brush to paint the negative shapes and bring out the flowers. The vase was built up in the same way placing the water first and using Indian red, Cerulean Blue, Gold Ochre, Violet and Sap Green for the stems. Finish with clear water under the vase to form a base.
Andrew completed two paintings a vase of flowers and a cityscape showing that his technique worked well in both paintings, it was a brilliant start to our year, many thanks to Andrew and his son for a great evening, and the donation of one of the paintings for us to raffle for Rainbows.