365 Days of Art: Day 17 – Fog

The challenge: Create some form of visual art, no matter how small, each day for a full year.

I decided to take a break from the usual stuff I’ve been doing. I discovered a YouTube video called How to Create Fog with Watercolor by Deb Watson (www.debwatsonart.com). It took her around 15 minutes, and I thought, “Hey, self, you should try this.” I decided I would make this the inaugural use of my Strathmore 400 series watercolor pad. I knew it was made out of wood pulp, but it is supposed to be better than the 300 series, right?

***cue the laugh track*** Not really.

Anyway, long story short, mine is nowhere near as good as hers, but I figure it’s pretty okay for a beginner following a YouTube video, stopping it every now and then to catch up, right? I’ve posted mine, then hers, so you can see the differences:

Hers. Please check out her art.

A few things I learned:

  • Paper matters. My paper started to break down after 2 washes.
  • Keep your workspace clean and spacious. I had everything crunched together and with my multiple brushes and pallets, adult beverage, phone so I could paint along with the YouTube video, etc, drops of water from the brushes and other things kept getting on my work. (See that bloom on the top of the mountain?)
  • Test color mixes before using them, and don’t load up colors before seeing if they are too dark. (In other words, I never wanted it to be that orange.) In my defense, she never specified the colors—just orange and blue—so I used a cadmium red/Naples yellow mix, Prussian Blue, Indigo, and Payne’s Gray to create a progression of blue. I think I would probably use Yellow Ochre next time instead of Naples yellow.
  • Make sure to keep your adult beverage on a coaster. If you don’t and you lift it off, the condensation could drop on your painting and you will utter adults-only words—especially if your favorite team is bombing and ends up with 5 turnovers in the NFL playoff game… (Who dat? No seriously, who was that cause it wasn’t the Saints playing.)

I also changed books and did a fire demonstration in DreamScapes Myth & Magic by Stephanie Pui-Mun Law. I ended up with a bloom in the Payne’s Gray area. At first, that frustrated me, but I really liked it when it dried. Lesson learned: texture works.

Mine is on the right. I probably should have lifted some of the yellow in the middle and kept it white.

All right everyone. I’m off to bed. Sweet dreams!

About M. B. Weston

M. B. Weston is an award-winning fantasy, pulp, young adult, steampunk, and paranormal author. Her attention to procedure and detail gives her works an authentic gritty, military feel that takes an adventure tale to the level of a true page-turner. Weston’s writing attracts both fantasy and non-fantasy readers, and her audience ranges from upper-elementary students to adults. A gifted orator, Weston has been invited as a guest speaker to numerous writing and science fiction/fantasy panels at conventions across the US, including DragonCon, BabelCon, NecronomiCon, and Alabama Phoenix Festival. She has served on panels with such authors as Sherrilyn Kenyon, J. F. Lewis, Todd McCaffrey, and Jonathan Maberry. Weston has spoken to thousands of students and adults about the craft of writing and has been invited as the keynote speaker at youth camps and at several schools throughout the US.
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