Watercolours with Jane Austin

We welcomed back Jane Austin for a watercolour demonstration on 27th January. It was 2019 when she last visited us!

Jane took us through all the stages of how to layer your paints to build up the image, giving us so many tips and techniques to remember. The painting still needs more work until it’s completed, but you can’t rush a watercolour…

The following week members had the opportunity to have a go at watercolours themselves. Jane provided photos for members to work from to practise the techniques she demonstrated. Members felt inspired by what they learnt last week and produced some lovely work.


Pastel Landscape demonstration

We had a great demonstration from Matthew Evans on the 18th November, who painted a landscape in pastels. He brought a photo of a landscape view and had drawn an outline of it in preparation.  He also brought some of his completed work which was impressive.

He gave us so many ideas and tips of how to use pastels and protect the image e.g. when you add water to pastel it becomes a watercolour to which you can then reapply pastel; if using a fixative you should lay the painting on a flat surface and spray it in a sweeping action from about 2ft away and greaseproof paper protects the image when travelling. The demonstration was very enjoyable and we all learnt so much.


Watercolour abstraction

Janet Gledhill led two Watercolour Abstract workshops on 30th September and 7th October, focusing mainly on landscapes.

She brought in some of her own work and explained how she created the different effects, giving us lots of ideas and inspiration. We attempted to create our own abstract paintings and quickly realised that it wasn’t as easy as it seemed! It was really interesting to explore a different style of painting.


Watercolour demonstration by Paul Talbot-Greaves

Last Friday we finally experienced a long-anticipated morning. About 30 people arrived to witness our president Paul Talbot-Greaves giving a demonstration of a local landscape in watercolour. As he used the society’s modern equipment, everyone in the room had a good view.

Paul brought along a pencilled sketch and a photo of the scene he had in his mind – he had added trees on his computer, changing the view slightly. He also showed us an edit of it to highlight the balance of his painting like the foundation of a house.

The next step was colour-matching. Paul didn’t use a very heavy paper, just 140lbs. With a big brush he started painting the light areas of sky, building, trees and covered the whole paper.  He let the paper dry off naturally, as the use of a hairdryer would freeze it.

Paul dried out his palette for the second stage and used his initial colour match strip. When the paper got too dry he sprayed it with water, but also used the dry-brush technique in parts. He splashed some water into the painting, flicking his brush to give the impression of grass. For the large shapes of brambles in the foreground Paul used big brushes and assured us that the colours underneath would come through. The edges were softened with a wet brush and Paul added shadows on the building and trees.

At break we were able to buy materials and greeting cards from Paul or ask for his advice. The finished painting was stunning even though the paint was still wet.