There were only 3 trees to paint with the watercolor pencils.
I painted these in my sketchbook which is not very good quality paper. I will have to try them on WC paper another time. From left to right we have a Scotch Pine, a winter tree, and a dead tree. I’m not crazy about the Pine, but that is how it goes sometimes. The pencils blended well and I got the effects I wanted. I carried on with painting trees in the Top Tips book I mentioned previously. I chopped up A4, 140 lb Winsor & Newton paper, to 4×6″. I wanted to work small and on both sides.
Some of the trees I did more than once as I wasn’t happy with my first attempt. I tried to use the brush size as the artist suggested, but the 3/4″ flat brush I have wasn’t working for me and is an acrylic brush. I ordered a 3/4″ watercolor brush which has natural and synthetic hairs and am hoping that it will work better. In any event, my lines were too heavy. I will talk you through them. Painting 1 and 2 of poplars was more of a challenge than it looked. I still need to practice these. They look awkward on their own, but would look OK in a landscape. Painting 3 of the fir tree was easy to do as was number 4 of the palm tree. It could probably have a bit more of a bend to it if it were next to water. Painting 5 was used with the brush suggested and it just didn’t happen for me, so I went back to what I had learned in the watercolor class I took and used a different brush and dry brushed the leaves for painting 6. I was happy with the trunks and branches in both paintings, but it is the leaves that can let you down. The same thing happened in painting 7 when I used the flat brush, so I changed my brush and used the dry brush method as before for painting 8 which turned out better. I think that is going to be my style for leaves as it seems to work for me.
Painting 9 was an exercise that was supposed to take 5 minutes. It took me 10! It was supposed to be all wet in wet. The disadvantage of doing a lesson and not having a reference photo except for the finished painting is that you really don’t know how it is going to turn out. I think my painting started to dry too quickly, even though I wet the paper twice. I did read the instructions beforehand so I had my colors ready, but it isn’t great and I will do it over again on the back. It is a lesson and I learned something. Because the paper I was working on was small, I did need to adjust the brush sizes. That wasn’t a problem. I enjoyed painting the branches with the Rigger brush and it is now one of my favorites. By the way, I still can’t get the hang of painting the leaves on the willow tree. Need to practice that more. All in all, not a bad day’s painting!