Comparing Apples with Lemons

Today I went to my art classes despite my tooth pain.  It’s not too bad now, given I was able to move the hospital’s appointment forward to tomorrow morning.  Yikes but better than had originally planned which was a week later!

After a few sessions on learning dessin (pencil sketching), I decided to move onto watercolours.  I already do some work on it at home but the classes help me with the techniques as well as getting some useful tips and gaining more confidence with this medium.


The first lesson involved drawing some fruit to get an idea about dimension, light/shade and colour.  Our instructor, Sugawara-sensei gave me some great insight into mixing colours to create beautiful work.

To start with, he suggests using a palette filled pre-existing trays of colours rather than tubes of paint.  Sakura makes a really wonderful one called “Koi Water Colors”.


Though I have already my set of watercolour brushes, I’m not too happy with them as the bristles tend to wilt after the first use and hairs tend to fall out.  I’m told that these Japanese water paint brushes are excellent, and I agree!  I think I’ll be getting more of them when am in Japan next in a few weeks….

One useful stuff to keep in mind about watercolours is to start with light colours and layer your way up to darker ones.  Kinda obvious but I used to paint in blocks of colour and wondered why there was no continuity or flow.


And don’t be afraid of soaking your brush with loads of paint if you want to have strong colours.  That worked quite well too.

Happy with the results, and so was the instructor.  Another of my work he wants to use in the art exhibition at the Japan Go Culture Centre in Amstelveen.  Woooo!  It’s on 27 May…


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