Saturday, March 19, 2016

Indian Lake and Pheasant Branch

Gouache in sketchbook at Indian Lake

A few weeks ago I got a new sketchbook from Dick Blick and took it out to Indian Lake on March 11th and to Pheasant Branch the next day.  It's a huge 11x14 Strathmore hardbound one with their excellent 500 series paper for mixed media.  A two page spread like this is 21 x 13 which for me is a pretty ambitious outdoor watercolor.  I recently started painting with gouache which is opaque watercolor that has a nice matte finish.  This is the best 90lb paper I have found for standing up to lots of water.  So far I have tried Schminke and M. Graham brands of artists' gouache and both are excellent.  I don't care for Designer Gouache esp. the Winsor Newton which I think smells really bad although I guess some people like the smell.  I find it much different than working with transparent watercolor and not any easier.  Guess there is no such thing as easy when it comes to painting.  But is was fun to be outdoors again with a brush in hand.

Frederick's Hill - Gouache in sketchbook at Pheasant Branch


  1. Really like the tree painting. Nice feel and colors. I've thought about trying gouache myself so I'll try to see you do one of these once we start with the group outings.

  2. Thanks, Tom -- I think you would be better off watching James Gurney's video than watching me. It is a struggle to let it dry and not over paint it. Like transparent watercolor you do really need to put it down and leave it alone more often than not. And it would be easier to do a much smaller study but that big format is so appealing.