Monday, January 25

Prep Work for Watercolor

Today’s Image
"Prep" Work

I hope you’re having a good art day or that you will soon begin your art day.

Some days I have a little trouble getting started. I don’t know why. I thoroughly enjoy my artwork and painting, and I look forward to it (almost) every day.

I suppose it’s that initial push to move you from inertia to action that I need—especially on a Monday morning. Whatever.

I’m at that point right now. I’m writing this on the laptop in my studio, and my current project sits right next me. I can look over and see my painting, or what will eventually be my painting, waiting patiently for me to get back to work on it.

I will just as soon as I finish today’s blog.

The plan for today’s work is to finish masking off all the areas with the whitest-whites on my painting with frisket. I’m almost finished with this masking, and I should actually be able to start painting.

This is the part of the preparatory work in painting that should be called drudge work. This is after you have selected your motif and you’ve envisioned the masterpiece it will become. Only you can’t start on it yet because you have to “prepare.” I don’t consider the prep work as part of the creative process.

For a watercolor, this preparatory drudge work can include:

-paper stretching; I don’t do it, but some people stretch their watercolor paper before they begin to paint to keep the paper from curling up; I just wait until the painting is finished, then I flatten it.

-measuring off the dimensions of your painting and applying tape around the edge of the image area so that you will have a border around it; this can be tricky when you’re trying to peel off 30 inches of tape at one time; (hint: use tear-by-hand tape).

-transferring you motif, or your vision of a motif, onto your paper or canvas as the case may be; this can be done by sketching or tracing; (this assumes you are not free-handing an abstract work that will somehow paint itself :-)

-as I mentioned, masking off the areas in which you don’t want any paint to touch; this part is mind-numbing, for me anyway.

Finally! After doing most or all of that, I can actually begin to mix and apply some paint. I can hardly wait.

Now I just need to finish this blog--that’s easy…


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