Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Photoshop and Watercolor Process

I am used to just winging it when it comes to painting, but this time I tried a more controlled approach.  My vision was of a fox spinning gold inside his winter home, where he could feel warm and cozy.  Here's the process behind the painting, "The Golden Thread" -- a sequence of photos taken for your wonderings.  I left little notes here and there about what mediums I am using and what the heck I'm doin' drawing with crystals.  Never a dull moment out here in the woods. 

Prismacolor colored pencil on bristol.

4B Graphite pencil on bristol.

Here I am transferring the pencil drawing onto the watercolor paper.  I lay tracing paper over the final drawing, ink it and flip it over where I coat the tracing paper in graphite.  I flip it graphite side down onto the watercolor paper and begin to trace over my lines with a crystal wand.  The wand is comfortable to hold and rolls over the lines smoothly.

This view.  These colors!  Out the window of my foxes den!

I wanted to get the most luminosity from the watercolors as possible, so I had to plan ahead with the color scheme in photoshop first.  This took away some fear because I was playing with colors that I had not yet worked with.  It turned out to be really a fun process.

A friend of mine recently told me how much she loved working with parchment paper and watercolor.  Do a wash, wrinkle the paper and lay it over the wet wash.  Set books on top and when dry, peel off and be marveled!

Working with the first layer of color wash.  I love love love watercolors! 

Drawing in the details with a squirrel hair #5 brush.

Adding gold watercolor to the frame designs.  

I had a nice texture behind the piece by using parchment paper, but it felt too empty at the bottom of the image.  I took kitkitdizzy fern leaves and painted them with gold and brown acrylic paint, then stamped them into the piece. 

Complete!  A thorough experiment in control over watercolor, and I loved the process of using photoshop to map out the colors.  Final piece measures 11" x 14".

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