Thursday, March 22, 2007

Secret weapons...

So many people have asked me "how" I make my watercolors
that I've decided to make a nice and long post about it
and share it with all of you.
My "secrets" to nice & bright watercolor paintings:

I buy Cotman Watercolors in a tube by Windsor & Newton.

These are the 12 colors I use
(I buy them separately, not in a set):

-Turquoise 654
-Cobalt Blue Hue 179
-Prussian Blue 538
-Indigo 322
-Permanent Rose 502
-Cadmium Red Hue 095
-Cadmium Orange 089
-Cadmium Yellow Pale Hue 119
-Yellow Ochre 744
-Burnt Umber 076
-Ivory Black 331
-Chinese White 150

-Acquarello Watercolor Artistico Extra White
(extra white makes colors look brighter)
100% Cotton (Grana Satinada, Hot pressed) by Fabriano
You can buy it here.
Aquarelle Fontenay 100% Cotton
(Fine Grain, Cold Pressed) By Canson.

I buy these in blocks because
I like the fact that the block is glued
on 4 sides and it prevents the paper from warping
from the humidity of the watercolor.
It does warp a little but if you let it dry completely
on the block before ripping the page out
it straightens back again perfectly.

First, I sketch, then when I'm happy with my design
I draw it with a very sharp extra hard pencil (a 6H usually)
directly on my watercolor paper.

I keep my watercolors
on a plastic palette like the one shown above.

Then I start to color in the lines with my watercolors.
I use synthetic round pointed brushes, these are
really good.

I never took a watercolor class...
I'm pretty sure that helped me develop
my own style of painting.
I'm totally enamored with this medium.
I also paint with oils but watercolors are my favorite
and what I'm most comfortable with.

My collages are made with my own images,
usually discarted watercolors
that I cut up and paste or old journal pages.
(yes, I do actually cut them up)

Hope this helps anyone
that wants to give watercolors a try
& inspires you to get creative!
Thank you for all your lovely comments on my work,
it's really a pleasure to share it with you guys :o)
Oh!, the illo I made for this post was made with ink,
watercolors and a photo
of my trusty palette.


69 Lovely Comments:

Anonymous Kristin said...

Thank you so much for sharing. I'd really like to try my hand with this style. By the way, what does illo mean?

3/22/2007 12:48 PM  
Blogger Geninne said...

Thank you Kristin :)
"illo" is a short way of saying: illustration.

3/22/2007 12:53 PM  
Blogger Sonia M said...

ok you know i think your totally cool and your art work is brilliant

i have only one question what do you use white ink for?? Teach us oh great one *giggle*

3/22/2007 12:59 PM  
Blogger Sonia M said...

actually i have 2 questions

when you finish your work do you outline with your micron??

3/22/2007 1:05 PM  
Blogger Carlene said...

Excellent! Now all I need is some of your talent and imagination and I'm all set!


3/22/2007 1:10 PM  
Blogger zime said...

Gracias por compartir tus "secretos", tan generosa como siempre.

3/22/2007 1:15 PM  
Anonymous Angie said...

Thank you, thank you. I feel a trip to my local art supply store may be in order.

3/22/2007 2:08 PM  
Blogger Mary Carmen San Vicente said...

Yo aprovecho que vine a caer en tu blog ahora, (siempre estoy echando ojo en tu flickr) y también tengo una duda, las rayas y puntos blancos que veo en tus diferentes acuarelas supongo que las haces aparte con tu white acrylic ink ?? Me gustaría saber pues yo siempre que quiero dejar espacios en blanco me la paso cuide y cuide de respetarlos y no pasarme y odio !
Saludos !

3/22/2007 2:49 PM  
Blogger Zabrina said...

Oh my, thanks for sharing this. I can remember now I went to get some skills a long time a ago, I was like 18 yo and since then, I did not do anything else with watercolors. Another day I was at Michaels looking around, looking at materials, specially the watercolors...
Your colors and drawings are divine!

3/22/2007 3:43 PM  
Anonymous mara said...

Hola Geninne, muchas gracias por toda esta informacion. Siempre admiro tus acuarelas y lo brillante de sus colores. Voy a seguir practicando las acuarelas, Ya veras! Gracias por la inspiracion.

3/23/2007 7:22 PM  
Blogger Majeak Ann said...

Ya no es un secreto, pero que bueno que lo compartes Geninne!
Tu blog es muy lindo, siempre es un deleite ver lo que nos muestras, inspiras mucho.
Te mando un fuerte abrazo, y también quería agradecerte por tus palabras bellas en el blog.
Eres espectacular!
un beso*

3/24/2007 10:32 AM  
Blogger Marlen said...

Hola G9
Me encanta curiosear tu blog. Con estos secretos que compartes chance me anime a intentar con acuarelas -cosa siempre he querido- bueno falta que las bebas me dejen... :o)
Y como mi imaginación no es nada desarrollada, pienso que empezaré por intentar copiar tus diseños... sin fines de lucro lo prometo.

3/24/2007 4:55 PM  
Blogger kg said...

thank you!!! i, for one, have been oh-so-curious as to what your technique is for quite some time now. i am also inspired to know that you are self-taught in watercolors. i enjoy visiting your blog.

3/24/2007 9:29 PM  
Blogger paola said...

Gracias Geninne!
Un placer tu pequeña visita guiada, pero te olvidaste de mostrarnos tu varita mágica!

3/25/2007 3:48 PM  
Blogger Patricia said...

Oh I hadn't seen this!!! This is so helpful. Thanks for sharing Gennine! :)

3/29/2007 10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anna said...

Thanks so much! I am enamored with watercolors, but have seen too kmany washed-out pastel pallets. Yours are so inspiring. I can't wait to try this. When I have time. Ha!

10/29/2007 12:56 PM  
Blogger ZenCrafter said...

Thanks so much for this detailed tutorial. I now have my shopping list and am headed to the art supply store! I can't wait to experiment!

7/24/2008 7:55 AM  
Blogger Yulendys Jorge said...

Gennie, realmente eres muy generosa. Debes tener a tu lado siempre la protección Divina.

Gracias por compartir esta guía. Satisfizo plenamente mis inquietudes.

Un abrazote desde Santo Domingo.

1/01/2009 2:12 PM  
Blogger angela & peter said...

Wow.. thank you so much, you have totally inspired me to paint again... but, I have a question... do you put your paint from the tube into your pallett and let it dry and then use like you would a block? and do you do your line work after you have painted... can you please give us a little tutorial? thank you so much

1/25/2009 8:04 PM  
Blogger loveandbutterflies said...

I am soooooo encouraged, I left you a comment also on esty, I basically use the same materials and sware by the micron pen, I also use cotman windsor and newton watercolors as well, but really like the artist ones though they are VERY expensive. wonderful work..blessings. Check out my blog..though I need more work.

3/04/2009 6:52 PM  
Anonymous joanie said...

This is so kind of you to share your list of materials. I've been using watercolours since before art school but love hearing recommendations from others on materials. For me, trying different brands & tools usually leads to all new art - thanks :)

3/06/2009 6:44 AM  
Blogger La Paca Partida said...

Thank you very much!

5/19/2009 7:43 AM  
Blogger Shipra Panosian said...

you are such a dear for sharing your technique with us. Thank you. You have such an amazing and unique style, and it's nice to have an answer to the question "how on earth does she do this?!!" :)

5/25/2009 7:01 PM  
Blogger monty said...

It is very generous of you to share. I just got the knack of drawing and have always been enamored of styles similar to yours. Can you recommend any books on watercolor illustration techniques?

7/17/2009 11:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are so kind, not to even mention generous, to share your materials list and how-to's with would-be watercolorists who have been inspired by your wonderful paintings.

7/29/2009 8:38 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...

I used to use Cotman, have you ever tried Holbein paint? You will never go back to Windsor and Newton if you do. The intensity of color far surpasses any other brand.

Just thought I'd pass it along.

8/18/2009 1:55 AM  
Blogger ale said...

gracias geninne!!!you are soo nice talent...and you shared tese things with us!!!you make us very happy and you put ourselves millons kilos of inspiration!!!!!
besos enormes!!!!!!!...ale

8/28/2009 10:15 AM  
Blogger silvia said...

Just discovered your blog.. so beautiful.. I admire people like you who does what is born for..


9/08/2009 8:09 AM  
Blogger Linda said...

Geninne, I cannot express to you how much I love your designs. This blog makes me so happy just to look at it! I am going to read every post since you started because it makes me feel so good. Wish I knew you in person! You are incredibly talented.

9/09/2009 12:07 PM  
Blogger jo so and sew said...

Your generosity in sharing all your techniques is very heartwarming... that's a great lesson in itself...thank you!

10/26/2009 3:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your works are just amazing!! I never thought watercoloured artworks would look so vibrant! Thanks for inspiring me :D

11/23/2009 11:42 PM  
Blogger MAL said...

I would also like to thank you for sharing your techniques. For someone like myself who is just starting to paint with watercolors, it is a great help to see what and how others create, especially when they create nice work!

Thanks for sharing!

12/28/2009 3:27 PM  
Anonymous Christine d'Anecdotes said...

You're so inspiring ! Every post is a little sunshine to me.

7/01/2010 9:16 AM  
Anonymous Tanya said...

thanks so much for sharing- very cool of you.
What about when you paint over your drawing? does the pencil not smear?
Your paintings are beautiful and I love your style- I primarily use acrylic, but you have inspired me to try watercolors.

8/10/2010 7:06 PM  
Blogger love lui said...

I found your art on etsy and now I am so pleased to have discovered your blog which is just a wonderful place. Watching this is so insipring as is your art - thank you, I'm thrilled!!

8/17/2010 10:47 PM  
Blogger A girl with a smile said...

Thank you! this is inpiring

8/24/2010 3:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So gracious of you to share. Thank you! I have become addicted to your blog and look forward to each day's posting. Thank you for that too!

9/28/2010 4:45 PM  
Blogger amy said...

Thank you so much for sharing this info. Just viewing your space here is such inspiration. I'd love to give this type of medium a try - and what a wonderful activity to do with children on these snowy days!

12/17/2010 5:29 AM  
Anonymous erin said...

Thanks for sharing this info. I love your work!! Had another question about supplies-what kind of printer do you use?
Thanks so much-looking forward to your future creations:)

1/20/2011 2:35 PM  
Blogger Mandy Behrens said...

I'm in LOVE with your work! I can't wait to show my young daughters (ages almost 8 + 9) your site, videos, and lovely art. We plan to create art over our school's week-long break at the end of this month and this will DEFINITELY get our creative juices flowing. I'm so lucky to have found you. Cheers!

2/08/2011 10:19 AM  
Blogger Halina said...

Thank you so much for sharing your methods and all your paintings are so inspiring! I've tried to use a pen for the ink, but after a lot of testing, I found out that a flat nr. 2, synthetic brush works just fine :)

3/07/2011 7:47 AM  
Anonymous Wendles said...

Thank you for sharing. I love your beautiful birds and vibrant colours! Very inspiring. :)

1/10/2012 9:30 PM  
Blogger allmixedup art said...

I noticed this image on looked familiar, so I did a google search and it is your image.

there is no link on Pinterest to give you proper credit, so I left a comment with the correct link! :)

2/24/2012 2:59 PM  
Blogger Lori @ Studio Waterstone said...

Thanks so much for sharing this! Love your work and follow your blog obsessively. :)

Question: What type of traveling watercolor brush would you recommend? I'm talking about the kind which holds water and have noticed a couple of brands.


5/27/2012 5:42 AM  
Blogger karimaxwell said...

fantastic tips.
love your enthusiasm.
there is such incredible discovery in finding your own path, isn't there?
yahoo, you.

10/26/2012 5:36 AM  
Blogger Ma.Diwata Dyosa Engkantada Milagrosa said...

thanks for the advice

12/29/2012 4:28 AM  
Blogger Marsha said...

Hi!! Thanks for sharing your methods and materials. You mentioned a medium. Would you mind sharing which medium. On my computer there wasn't a link. Thanks!!

1/23/2013 6:35 AM  
Blogger Pam Altschwager said...

I'm really pleased I found your blog via Etsy. I just love your colourful work. Thank you for sharing your tips and tricks. It has inspired me to give watercolours a go. Best wishes. Pam
PS I couldn't click on some of your links on the right side of your blog. Perhaps it's because I'm viewing it from Australia.

2/03/2013 1:27 AM  
Blogger Chas Gauthier said...

Thank you so much for your information and inspiration. It makes me want to get back to painting in watercolor again, and I will soon. As soon as my supplies come in the mail. Look me up on my blog.

Thanks again,

4/01/2013 11:04 AM  
Blogger kelly thompson said...

thank you for this...looking into it NOW!

6/23/2013 11:03 AM  
Blogger Shelly Porter said...

So creative. So darling. So humble and generous of you to share your "secret weapons"! Love that. Your work is joyful and charming and natural in a way that is your very own. A very admirable artist you are. I totally enjoy seeing your work and your fun posts. As an artist myself, I initially started out with a major influence of my work being the Mexican culture and it's colors. While I still use the color, I have moved away from reality into abstract (and I do mainly watercolor with some acrylic). Seeing your work and your surroundings brings that all back to me. Thanks Geninne!

2/09/2014 8:38 AM  
Blogger Laura Lea said...

Thanks for sharing! I've never used white ink. I am exploring watercolors and am experimenting a lot lately. Thanks for the inspiration.

4/24/2014 8:36 PM  
Blogger AeyBlog said...

Thank you for sharing tips.

7/22/2014 12:10 AM  
Blogger Haley Cross said...

Beautiful! I love your style!!

1/11/2015 6:36 AM  
OpenID laurakarmona said...

Muchísimas gracias por compartir todo esto. Eres muy generosa. Y toda una inspiración!:)


4/29/2015 1:45 AM  
Blogger Kay said...

Thanks so much for sharing you how-to!!! Love your style & colors!!!

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