PAINTING with watercolours can be tricky but Paul Arnott made it look and sound easy during his demonstration for Lyme Regis Art Society.
Working on 140lb watercolour paper, unstretched but taped around the edges with transparent packing tape, Paul showed members where he had laid streaks of blue masking fluid before putting a water-wash across the paper.
Using the wet-on-wet technique, he brushed yellow across the sky and foreground with a goats-hair hake brush followed by a thicker layer of yellow suggesting clouds and sand reflections.
With the paint still wet, cadmium red was mixed in to create a dusky orange with lines of permanent rose creating thin but brilliant streaks in these clouds. With a dry brush, he softened the edges, dragging the brush up and down to create cumulus clouds which were recreated in the damp sand and water lower in the foreground.
Using the same brush, Paul then lifted colour of the sunlit edges of the clouds whilst darkening the bases to send the eye into the brilliant centre of the image.
Finally, islands, cliffs and rocks were added using a warm blue-brown mix and light areas defined by lifting off paint with a razor blade. The masking fluid was rubbed off to reveal the crests of waves and a few seagulls tossed against the dark clouds.
After tea, Paul demonstrated his techniques for creating images of people, always starting with a ‘blob’ then adding heads arms and legs.
What made the afternoon especially enjoyable was the witty and often racy comments that accompanied his teaching, and at times he had the hall rocking with laughter.
Lyme Regis Art Society meets on alternate Tuesdays in the Woodmead Halls from 2pm to 4pm until the end of March. The last meeting this autumn will be on December 4, which will be the annual general meeting, followed by a talk by Greg Wellman, entitled ‘Africa and Artist for Conservation’.
Visitors and new members are always welcome. For further details, contact Sheila Stratton on 01297 445464 or visit www.lymeregisartssociety.org.uk