Saturday, May 1, 2010

Little watercolour Portrait - Laura

2.5 x 3.5 inches
Watercolours on 300gsm Smooth Arches paper
When I first got back into art in a big way a few years ago, I mostly worked with watercolours, and I think of all the wet mediums, it is still my favourite (although I have a long way to go in mastering it). This portrait of our eldest son's girlfriend was done quickly, as I was trying to decided whether to offer commissioned portraits in watercolours.
I am currently working on a commissioned illustration, which I started again for the fourth time, (this is partly why my blogging has been so sparse in the last week or two). Part of my frustration in working with watercolours is finding the perfect support to work on. Whilst most watercolourists seem to produce beautiful paintings on traditional surfaces, I find even the smoothest papers don't allow me to paint the way I want to. So after unsuccessfully trying to do my illustration on Rtistx panel, 600gsm Smooth Arches Paper (not smooth at all!) and then Colourfix paper; I then thought I would try the new Canson Mi-teintes Tex which is actually a pastel paper. This surface is perfect for what I am trying to achieve. I used to work predominantly on Fredrix watercolour canvas, and whilst I found this a fabulous surface to work on, I also found that because I work in miniature, the texture of the canvas gave my prints a grainy appearance that I wasn't satisfied with. The Canson Mi-teintes Tex accepts watercolours in much the same way as the watercolours canvas, but gives a smoother finish, and at only $1.60aud per sheet, it is also extremely affordable. Fingers crossed, I will complete the illustration in the next day or two and will keep you posted :)


AutumnLeaves said...

Laura's portrait is lovely, Karen. Watercolor is also my favorite medium though mastering it will never happen for me. Have you tried Yupo paper? Just curious. I like what I've seen in blogland when others attempt it. I keep wanting to give it a whirl.

Miniature Art by Karen Hull said...

Thank you Sherry - I have tried Yupo, but it was a bit too slippery for me. I like a bit of control and I think you have to be prepared for the unpredictable with yupo - it certainly encourages creativity!!!

Artoholic said...

A lovely soft feel to this portrait Karen, well suited to the watercolour.

I would never have thought of that surface for watercolour - must give it a try.

My "Rolls Royce" of watercolur surfaces is Clayboard - smoother than a baby's bum, but not cheap as it come in from the US. (I buy mine from Parkers at the Rocks)

It's like white laminex on the front, and masonite on the back. Can take an absolute beating. Apparently you can also use their Aquaboard for watercolour WITHOUT the need for framing under glass - just use their final fixative spray and it's good to go.

Miniature Art by Karen Hull said...

I bought some of the Claybord Cindy and I can imagine it is fabulous, particularly when used with a combination of airbrushing and watercolours as you do. I found it had a strange surface for transparent watercolour work, and a circular texture showed through, but I might dig it out and have another go.

Mona said...

Interesting to hear about Tex, Karen---I've been a fan of Mi Tientes paper, but haven't tried this one. I'll look forward to seeing the illustration.

Miniature Art by Karen Hull said...

Thank you Mona - it is only a fairly new surface - our art stores just got it in. I think Canson developed it to create a product to compete with the colourfix paper.