Playing With Watersolubles

I got out all of my watersoluble pencils and crayons.

My Photo Stream

As you can see, I have a lot.  That does not include any acrylic paint I have that can be mixed with water, watersoluble oil paint, gouache, and pastels.  Yes, you CAN wet pastels.  I am following a book I wrote about yesterday.  Yesterday I painted trees in watercolor and today I am going to do them in watercolor pencils.  I do not have the brand of pencil that Charlie Evans uses, which is Daler-Rowney.  I have Derwent and Caran D’ache.  I just ordered some Faber Castell watercolor pencils (they are meant to be the best) from E-bay.  Before I do the lesson, I wanted to try out my pencils and crayons to see how they work as I hadn’t used them for a long time.

My Photo Stream1

As you can see, I did some basic trees in three colors.  I don’t have the exact colors that Charlie Evans uses, so I used the closest I could find. The colors meant to be used were a dark green, a yellow and a blue grey.  Here are some observations:  Firstly, all of the pencils and crayons show marks.  You will not get a painting exactly like a watercolor and to try and make it the same will be futile.  Marks are part of the character of a painting made with watersolubles.  I have a few other books on using watersolubles and you can see the obvious difference between the two types of painting.  So, although they are a water medium, they are not watercolors in the traditional sense.  Secondly, all of the products blended nicely when wet and made some lovely soft areas.  Thirdly, none of them did well when I tried to pull down the colors from the tree to make trunks and branches except for the Reeves wax pastel.  It was necessary to take off color from the pencil or crayon with my brush to make the rest of the tree.  Please note that I worked in my cheap sketchbook and not on watercolor paper.  I’m not sure if that made any difference, but I will find out soon enough.

Using watercolor pencils is a great way of sketching outdoors without all of the mess and paraphernalia. All you need is a box of pencils, your sketchbook, and a couple of water brushes.  After all, you are sketching, not making your masterpiece.  Your masterpiece can come from your sketches and photographs.  Well, that’s how I see it anyway.  It is a good way to practice drawing and observation.  The other great thing about using watersolubles is that there are no rules about mixing and matching products.  I am looking forward to trying these out.

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