Watercolor Exploration

Watercolor Exploration - student project

For my project I'm going to share my watercolor exercises.

 

P A P E R 

Although I enjoy the feel of the smoother paper and a loaded brush with water, I do enjoy the final result of the more textured papers. 

Watercolor Exploration - image 1 - student project

 

S M A L L   B R U S H // L A R G E   B R U S H

I love that a small round brush can still be pushed and dragged to create larger shapes, but there's a certain enjoyable freedom I feel when I have a larger brush with a lot of paint in it ready to go. I also enjoy the feeling of painting larger in general

Watercolor Exploration - image 2 - student project

 

I M P R O V // P L A N N E D

I probably said it a thousand times in the class, but I really love to have some idea of where I'm going when I start. I think improvised painting is good practice for me to get me out of my comfort zone, but as far as producing work that looks better, doing some planning first is the way to go for me. 

Watercolor Exploration - image 3 - student project

 

S O F T // B O L D

I LOVE bold watercolors, but I find it's one of those relationships that you can't have one without the other, especially with watercolor. If everything is bold and saturated then it sort of loses its flash, but this super bold peony next to the softer bulb makes for delicious contrast; helping the larger bloom to look even bolder. 

Watercolor Exploration - image 4 - student project

 

M O N O C H R O M A T I C // C O L O R F U L

I think had I separated the leaves a bit more on the colorful one I would've liked it more, but for this specific example I prefer the monochromatic look. I love all the variation in value while still showing the overall form; though I do enjoy the unplanned blends I got in the colorful leaves.

Watercolor Exploration - image 5 - student project

 

W E T  O N   W E T // W E T   O N   D R Y

I didn't do my wet on wet justice, but honestly that's usually how wet on wet goes for me! I have a hard time knowing when to stop or what to add, whereas the wet on dry layering makes a lot of sense to me. 

Watercolor Exploration - image 6 - student project

 

S E P A R A T E // T O G E T H E R 

I love both! I love the usability of painting separately, but the blending and finished look of a bouquet painted together. Watercolor Exploration - image 7 - student project

Watercolor Exploration - image 8 - student project

 

S U M M A R Y

I prefer more natural and earth toned colors over bright rainbow colors

I prefer painting on a smooth surface that lets the paint flow, though I do enjoy the texture that rougher papers bring to a dried piece

I love the shapes large and small brushes make, but the hand feel of a loaded larger brush is very satisfying to me and means I can paint for longer

I have a strong preference for planned painting over improvised painting, though I value improvised painting as a warm up exercise

I like a combination of soft and bold watercolors, as the contrast helps both seem more special

I prefer the clarity in using monochromatic palettes as it helps the value contrast shine, though using multiple colors results in interesting blends

wet on dry is my jam, I tend to get too blobby and messy with wet on wet

I enjoy painting blooms separately for digital use, but also having some combined bouquets as finished pieces

Watercolor Exploration - image 9 - student project

Dylan Mierzwinski
Illustrator & Lover of Flowers
Top Teacher