Monday, February 27, 2012

Watercolor Lesson 1


We had our first watercolor class this weekend. I am already in love with my class. Everyone was so focused and we learned a lot in our first hour together. 

The objectives for lesson 1 were as follows:

1. learn how to activate and use watercolor paints
2. learn how to create gradient color
3. two ways to mix watercolors, exploration of color mixing
4. learn the difference between warm and cool colors 
5. use wet on wet and wet on dry painting techniques

We talked about watercolors and how they work. We activated our paints by adding 
a drop of clean water to each color. We talked about the difference in opacity of color 
based on how much water was used.

We used our first watercolor page to create a single color gradient from darkest to lightest. We learned how to control our paint and its translucency with water. We discovered how to lift color when it was too dark for our liking using paper towels.  We also learned that we could "erase" problem areas by adding more water to that area and using the paper towel to lift the mistake right off the page!!

Next we moved on to color mixing. We discussed two ways of doing this with watercolors.

 One way to mix color is to use the lid of the paint tray as a pallet to mix colors together. This is a great way to mix color if you are working on a painting over time. The color that you mix can dry on the pallet and when you are ready to work again you simply add water to your new color and it will be activated and ready to use again. 

The second way to mix colors is to do it directly on your paper using the wet paint on wet paper painting technique. The first step is to wet the paper with your brush with clean water. Then add the colors you are mixing and use your brush to combine them right on the paper. One advantage to using this method is that you can leave the color a little varied and thus add texture to your work rather than a solid flat color. This method lends itself to some pretty interesting results. 

I had the kids divide their paper into 4 sections using a crayon and then they produced 4 new colors using the color mixing methods we discussed.

Finally, we discussed the difference between warm and cool colors. The kids divided their last paper into two sections and used warm colors on one side and cool on the other. We discussed some color theory at this point and talked about how different colors gave us different feelings and how the use of color could change the overall impact of a painting.

I love the dark, stormy quality of the cool colors here verses the happy summery feeling of the warm colors the artist chose to use.


I cannot wait to see what else we can discover and create together during this session!

1 comment:

  1. Good Work.Watercolor is a challenging medium, but what a pleasure it is to master! I loved this medium from the very start. The way its translucent qualities allow light to filter through the layers of pigment captivated me.

    Watercolor Lessons