Lemon Yellow (Nickel Titanate), Alizarin Crimson, French Ultramarine, Cobalt Turquoise, Naples Yellow, Burnt Sienna and Neutral Tint, all Winsor & Newton Professional Watercolour; Undersea Green, Daniel Smith Extra Fine Watercolor; Permanent White, Winsor & Newton Designer’s Gouache
•Brushes Winsor & Newton Pure Squirrel pointed wash brush, size 1; Raphaël Series 8404 Kolinsky sable brushes, sizes 0, 2 and 6; Raphaël Series 8711 synthetic chisel brush, size 12
•Paper Saunders Waterford 300gsm HP watercolour paper, 41x30cm •
•Graphite transfer paper
•White pencil crayon
Flowers have always been a great source of inspiration for me, offering such wonderful shapes and colours to play with. The large waxy blooms of magnolias are quite spectacular and make a beautiful subject for painting.
By depicting them against a dark-coloured background as I have done in the demonstration below, I was better able to capture the shapes of the flowers and their almost luminous colour.
I decided to work from photos as the flowering season was practically over. Experience tells me that even if you are working from live material, it is always a good idea to take a few photos for reference. Flowers can wilt or stems move, so a reference image is useful.
I chose my favourite paper, Saunders Waterford hot-pressed watercolour paper, for this painting. As well as liking the surface, it comes in a gummed block so there was no need to stretch the paper prior to painting.
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