Butterfly Coffee

Sorry I’ve been gone for a while.  Rather than get into a long explanation, I’ll just leave it at medical stuff and BABIES!  They’re super adorable and consume much of my time so we’ll see how much painting I get done.  I recently got some money for my birthday from my grandmother-in-law.  Happy birthday to me!  So of course I had to go on dickblick.com and find something.  I ended up with some Chinese watercolors that I’d been looking at for a while, some Ampersand Claybord, and scratchboard tools.  The first thing I did was make this color mixing chart.  Everyone should do this.  I know it’s time consuming, and you don’t want to, but do it.  This lets you know what your paint is capable of and how it mixes.  You may think you don’t have a color when you actually do.

Many people are sometimes surprised by how few colors I have in my palette when I enjoy such a wide range of colors.  The reason is because I prefer to mix my own.  I have more control this way.  This small set gives me a wide range of vivid intense colors to softer more muted ones.  I prefer chromatic blacks and greys to pre-made ones.  With this set I did notice that it didn’t disperse into the water as well as most traditional Western watercolors.  I had to work harder to achieve that effect.  Wet-in-wet and lifting still worked well.  This paper is cold press and not what I’m going to actually paint on, but I just wanted to get an idea of the paint.  I always do swatches of the color on separate pieces of paper before hitting my actually project anyway.

I also recently did a color chart for my inktense.  That allowed me to redo this painting and take it from this…

Piano Rose (c)

To this…

dads-piano

Obviously I improved in other areas as well, but you can see the difference in the depth of color.  I was more easily able to mix and layer color without being frustrated.  This one was a birthday present for my father.  Happy birthday daddy!

On to testing the Claybord.  My first attempt didn’t go so well.  I couldn’t layer colors like I’m normally able to, and it ended up blending together and creating mud instead of getting the detail I wanted.  Scratching out highlights was working so well either.  However, I did like the translucent effect on the shadows under the bowl and the drips and spray.  I did like the blending in the shadows under the bowl though.  As long as I didn’t over do it, I could move color to where ever I wanted.

I tried again with a different board.  This one went much better.  I knew I wanted a coffee cup and some sort of steam thing, and butterflies happened.  If you except that colors will blend together on this board, then things go much better.  You can put down color and have it not blend, but it is difficult to do.  The problem for me is that I like to glaze colors on top of each other.  I haven’t found that to be possible with this board.  I also had to scratch significantly into this board to get the highlights.  However, that may be due to the unique binder in my paints.  When I scratched into the ink, that came off much easier.

colorful-coffee
5×7 watercolor on Apmersand Claybord

So for this board, I’ve decided that I’m going to put it up for auction here.  Whoever offers the most gets it.  Payment can be done through a check or PayPal, whichever you prefer.  Since this ended up being a more whimsical painting we’ll do it as anything I get from this painting will go straight to anything I need for my children; bottles, diapers, a new stroller, etc.  Feel free to share this post with your friends.

The auction will go until Thursday, December 1, 2016, at 12:00 noon PST.  If you win it, we’ll go over the details of shipping later privately, but it will have a tracking number, and I am only able to ship within the USA right now.

Seattle Coffee [Coffee Painting]

Seattle Coffee (c)
5×7 coffee painting of Ampersand Gessoboard.

This was my first experiment using coffee and acrylic mediums.  I think it came out decently enough for the first try.  I didn’t like the gloss medium as much as I thought I would.  I may try mixing both the gel and the gloss next time to see if I get more of what I was looking for.  I’m also not sure if I like the gessoboard or not.  It’s a very smooth surface with was nice for the first layer, but I found it difficult to work with for the top layers.  I’ll have to try it again and see.  I may need a canvas with more texture.

Anyway,  I wanted this to be a little bit more of a looser painting and have something to do with Seattle.  So, I thought of a cup spilling out into a cityscape of Seattle.  My first wash wash really watery, and when the drips happened I kind of went with it.  Seems to have added a nice little touch to it.  Some of them went a little longer than I wanted, but oh well.  It was a fun little practice piece, and I have some ideas for next time!

Other Paintings You Might Enjoy:

Piano Rose [Inktense]

Snowy Squirrel [Coffee]

Frozen Lady [Coffee, Tea, & Wine]

Pansies [Tea]

Clock and Daisies [Coffee]

Sip of Coffee [Coffee]