P. Barrie

Well-known member
12” x 9”, watercolor on canson cold press painted from photo ref. I’m not well versed in watercolor techniques and only have a few decent watercolor brushes, lacking in pointed rounds. Having some trouble with going to dark to soon and then frustration with trying to lift the paint. This one, I feel has some merit, giving me some impetus to do more. Any technique coaching would be appreciated.

I am too ignorant watercolour techniques to offer any coaching, but I can tell you I like it and love the Hopper-like quality of the light on the tree.
This is great...At first glance, I thought it was a very traditionally painted watercolor and didn't know you had no real prior watercolor painting experience at all. The tree is especially great. The pull-off in the foot hills in the background is also sweet. I'd practice on a little more wet on wet, maybe invest in some rounds to experiment with. I think you're doing great! Really super job.
I can't do wc , but this looks very good to me and has a wonderful ambiance.
I have a hard time with watercolor too but really admire a good watercolorist. Have you ever seen a Tom Lynch tutorial? He has a loose and free style that really works.
I also thank you for the tutorial, I've never tried them (I don't know if I'll try the color in the future) but I really like to admire the watercolor and years ago I couldn't resist a mini set of colors.
Thanks to all for looking and commenting. “Hopper like” is quite a compliment. 😊
snoball, Thanks for the link.
I'm also learning watercolours it's been a year since I started (previously acrylics) so I'm not an expert by any means, but I can pass on some of the things I've learned so far that I think are important:

I find that this is what makes the most difference to the experience: wet on wet, lifting, etc is just easier on good 100% cotton paper of 140lb or more, I like cold press or rough textures.

I like Escoda Perla brushes, synthetic, great point, resilient and not too expensive, excellent work horses. These don't hold too much water, you need something like a squirrel mop for that (can be synthetic squirrel, they have those too).

Control of water
How wet to get the paper? When to stop layering and just let it dry?

Paint consistency
How diluted or heavy the paint should be to achieve a certain effect? There's an analogy for this, from tea to butter. An important thing to consider to avoid "blooms" or "cauliflowers" is to paint thicker over leaner, sort of like oil paint (fat over lean).

Mix on the paper
To me, this is what makes watercolor unique and beautiful, the effect of mingling pigments in the water is something no other medium offers.

Learn your pigments
In watercolor the unique properties of pigments matter more (more than oil or acrylic in my opinion). Play with your paints and identify which granulate, which are staining (these are very difficult to lift), which are transparent or semi-transparent.

Techniques and resources
There is a lot of content online, specially on youtube, not all is very good. I like these channels:

- In Liquid Color: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnh5k3c1miCbQlt0Q8iXePw. She has this series where she showcases different paints and pigments, it's quite informative.
- Roland Lee https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCblyGievHpud0hVZXyb71Cg his demos are good and I specially like his emphasis on negative painting, which watercolours lend themselves to
- Teoh Yi Chie https://www.youtube.com/user/teohyc - Reviews of watercolour stuff, demos. Focused on urban sketching

Happy painting!
Tinkertrain, thanks so much for these tips. They are right on as far as I have experienced.
I'm glad this one passed by again, I really love the color scheme of it. I think you've done well, experience or not.
I am not so great at watercolors, but I love to work with them, and I find your list pretty spot on from my experience--with the paper especially. I interviewed an incredible watercolor artist on my blog pretty recently and he gave a a few great tips about wetting the paper first and how it makes it a lot easier to work with. However, I have not done this ever. I have been afraid I think. I need to experiment a LOT more I think. A lot of my watercolor pieces come from trial and error and happy accidents.