The world looks better in watercolor


David’s Watercolor Brushwork

The Most Magical Watercolor Skills

The ability to create both soft edges... and sharp edges... in transparent watercolor... opens an artist up to the whole spectrum of magical visual effects. However... in order to master these loveliest of visual effects... an artist must possess the precise brush work skills that are utilized to create these effects. If you don’t know how to create a certain effect... on command... precisely when you need it... you won’t be able to create or combine brushstrokes effectively.

Watercolors are created with various brushstrokes.  They are like chords played on a piano. If you can learn how to play chords on a piano... you can play any kind of music.

And likewise... by learning how to create various brushstrokes... and then learning how to correctly combine them in a painting... you can paint anything.

As artists study Nature it is not enough that you get inspired to paint.

Unless you can study Nature’s wondrous manifestations of light... at various times of day... in different types of weather and then “replicate” those visual effects on paper... you will not be happy with your results.

And all too often when artists are confronted by the fact that they cannot seem to capture various types of subjects to their satisfaction... they then judge themselves way too harshly.

When in fact, most of the time... no one has ever actually trained you in  precise brushwork skills.

David painting on the banks of the Ganges in north India

David has been traveling all over India frequently since 1970. In fact... he credits India with making him the artist he is today.

As he says... “Traveling throughout the Himalayas... the deserts of Rajasthan, the hot plains... and the steamy jungles of the south... I’ve had to develop a wide spectrum of artistic skills that actually work. Sketching... doing small watercolor studies... and finished watercolors on location in all types of climate requires a very focused set of imaging skills... the most crucial being my brushwork. Learning how to create an enormous variety of visual effects by mastering my brushwork... is the single greatest skill that changed my life as an artist.”

The ability to create a wide range of visual effects... some with soft blended edges that disappear into one another... combined with others that have sharp, well defined edges... that’s the skill set that allows you to create the most magical effects in watercolor.

And this is the area I train artists in so that they gain more confidence and the ability to reproduce certain skills... on command... when they need a certain visual effect.

And sometimes it’s that one single visual effect in a design that makes the painting sing. Like the soft blended edge of wet reflective sand in this evening beach scene.

It’s Transparent Watercolor’s most powerful & magical attribute... the skillful combination of Soft & Sharp... that gives the painter the power to create very tangible... even emotional  “Moods” into the simplest of subjects.

And the combination of these imaging skills allows you to create very captivating compositions that catch an art lover’s eye in memorable ways.

I am a Watercolor Painter first... and a Wildlife Artist second. It’s my ability to paint watercolor in the way I do... that gives me the confidence to paint wildlife subjects.

And it’s my background as a rather traditional Landscape Painter in watercolor... that allows me to paint birds & animals in their natural surroundings.

And in fact... sometimes... it’s the surroundings... the landscape itself... that is the real subject and inspiration of my paintings.

But in every case... no matter what the subject... my inspiration and passion for whatever the subject is... it’s made possible through the skillful creation of very precise brushstrokes... in combination...

that’s what makes the painting possible.

This is why I strive to improve artist’s brush work skills in all of my workshops.

If you can play chords on a piano... you can play anything.

And if you can improve your brushstrokes... in combination... you can paint anything.

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