Thursday, October 10, 2019

Decoy #4 - watercolor

watercolor, 2019
available, 8"x10"

      It's been a while since my last decoy painting. I experimented with leaving this one a bit looser and more impressionistic. A bit of Holbein's Grey of Grey straight from the tube - a very opaque watercolor - blended along the beak helped to bring out the contour and emphasize some dimensionality. 

      The occasional use of opaque pigments in otherwise "transparent" watercolor allows me to add a little sparkle on top of dry passages without resorting to gouache or gesso. Not that I'm above using gouache or gesso or anything else that works for a particular painting. But some people and many organizations still are quite picky about what you can and cannot use in a transparent watercolor. Some would even disallow the use of any opaque pigment if it's visible on top of a darker hue like this one. I don't want to get into a long, drawn out thing here. I don't like anyone trying to apply "rules" to art (though there's nothing wrong with placing limits on yourself as a self-challenge). But, I do try to start off with every intention of keeping a painting purely transparent even to the point that almost all of the colors on my regular palette are transparent or semi-transparent. Of course, things happen; every piece takes it's own twists and turns. In the end I always do whatever the piece warrants, not what some organization or academic demands.

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