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Using wet on wet watercolour techniques

Donaghadee lighthouse

I am experimenting with damp watercolour paper techniques. There are many ways to keep the paper damp for a longer period so that one has time to paint a scene. I am not going to get into that in this post as I am in a bit of a rush. The most important thing for me is that my watercolours blend well on the paper and the edges stay soft, having more time to work is also a plus.
Since being accepted into The Water Colour Society of Ireland I have felt an urge to do a few watercolours of the emerald isle. I’d love to travel there but Covid is still restricting travel. I get my first jab this Friday, feels like a relief that I’m finally getting it.

This watercolour is of Donaghadee lighthouse, which lies southeast of Belfast. 52 x 34 cm

To view a full sized image please click the thumbnail below.

Donaghadee lighthouse
Donaghadee lighthouse

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I wish my watercolour nudes were better than they are.

Nude with roses

I’ll be honest. Nudes are difficult. Shading human skin in watercolour must be one of the hardest skills to achieve. It feels that way at least. Luckily, I love just trying and trying, … and trying to master it. One day, maybe – maybe not.
I gave this one a good go, I did my best. It’s not fun admitting to oneself that one has a long way to go before mastering a watercolour nude.

To see a larger image please click the thumbnail below

Nude with roses
Nude with roses

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Painting Ireland is a priority now

Ireland's Eye

I have been accepted into the Water Colour Society of Ireland. It’s a great honour and it means a lot to me. I grew up there and part of me will always be Irish – even after 36 years away. Damn, time flies.

Being accepted into the society means I will be asked to submit work for the annual exhibition held in Dublin. So I need to get painting those Irish scenes. What a great excuse for me to spend some time travelling along the west coast of Ireland for my art’s sake. ( After the pandemic of course. ) ūüėČ

This watercolour is of Ireland’s Eye. A dear friend of mine took a lovely photo and posted it on Instagram. Thank you for letting me use it as a reference Barbara. The view is from Malahide, outside of Dublin. It’s where I grew up as a teenager.



To see a larger image please click the thumbnail below.

Ireland's Eye
Ireland’s Eye
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After several visits to Björnö it was time

View from Björnö

I have been visiting Bj√∂rn√∂ here in the Stockholm archipelago for many weeks now. It gets a little warmer each time I sketch there. Yesterday, I decided to do a studio painting based on my sketches and photographs. I am trying to catch the Scandinavian melancholy I feel when I visit the archipelago during the winter months. I’m happy with the result.

Click the thumbnail below for a full-sized image.

View from Björnö
View from Björnö

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In watercolour it’s okay to say, let it bleed

Bleeding nude

I am looking for a softer approach to my painting and so I am testing different techniques. In this nude study the paper was very wet when I applied the watercolour pigment. The fact it spread like crazy is exactly why I love this medium.

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The seasons change and so does my neighbourhood

Kvärnholmen

This is a final version of a sketch I did during the winter months. I live in an old industrial area quite close to central Stockholm, it’s under development. I go for walks most days and I try to find beauty in what I see. It’s my quest right now. I want to avoid the pretty picture trap, some call them chocolate box – watercolours. Yes, I want to avoid that. I’m buying lots of old Lars Lerin books from the 80’s and 90’s, I think he captures the scandinavian everyday so well.

Title: Kvarnholmen in winter. 37 x 27 cm

Click the thumbnail below if you would like to see the full-sized image.

Kvärnholmen
Kvärnholmen
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Sketching my emotions Nr.6

Emotion Nr.6

I think this watercolour sketch represents my feelings pretty good. It’s March and summer is coming.

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My first plein air for this year in 6 degrees

Björnö

I managed my first plein air for this year. I visited Bj√∂rn√∂ Nature Reserve, which is east of Stockholm on Ingar√∂. The temperature almost reached 6 degrees! I had to use a gas burner to dry the painting, and yes, there is a burn mark. It’s becoming my signature. But seriously, it was so nice to get out and sketch. I had to trek for an hour to reach the spot I painted from but it was worth it.

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Sketching my emotions Nr.5

Emotion Nr.5

I could do a better job sketching this series but to be honest I like the freshness of a first attempt. It’s really interesting capturing emotions with watercolour.