I was thrilled this morning to see my painting of the Mountain Lion (Numbers24Nine) on the homepage of Yahoo's Watercolor Workshop. Thank you again Mark Nesseth for letting me use your photo as a reference!
One of the things I want to be working on this year is crystal, so I was excited to get started doing it. The crystal bowl was a gift to me from my dear husband. I worked from my own photo. When I took a photo of it today it buckled up immediately, I think because it was so freezing cold outside and the painting was wet. I'll probably chage out the photo when I get it fixed.
Two days later: I have now given this one and the wrapped portrait 3 coats of varnish. I used Golden Polymer Varnish with UVLS (Satin), put some in a glass jar and added approximately 1/4 of volume of water. I used a new brush for the first coat but found it to wash out easily enough and was able to dry it for the next coat; this product isn't nearly as sticky and brush destroying as the Golden Soft Gel that I used to glue the paper to the hardboard in the first step. My plan is to switch to using a sponge applicator for that glueing process in the first step.
My observations so far: (1) I like the soft sheen which as far as I'm concerned, did not change the color at all. (2) I think diluting it down is definitely necessary. As told small bubbles were present but disappleared as it dried. (3) The first coat made the paper buckle slightly, not on this painting but on the portrait. It flattened back out when dry, then buckled less on each subsequent coat. (4) I plan to give them both the fourth and final coat tonight before bed. Drying overnight or all day is long enough in our Minnesota dry climate; consequently I will do the varnishing in two days as opposed to four.
This is the finished painting, actually was a project on Watercolor Workshop last July, but I didn't do it then and it fits the project requirements for March
Photo by Brian E
March WcW project on bare trees
Times and Seasons
This is my first WC in which I adhered the paper (Aches 140 lb CP) to a piece of hardboard, in this case a gessoed art panel that I've had for awhile. See the post prior to this one which explains the steps.
Here are my notes so far:
I loved taking this out of my Clearbag and it was ready to go. No messing with taping, stretching, mounting, stapling etc. As I wet the paper with my brush, it did not lift or buckle, never through the whole thing. I'm going back in now for a 2nd sitting to tweak this painting and will continue to report to you how it went. I can see this mounting technique would work for me even if I didn't intend to varnish it. I am smiling!
I understand there are many ways to do this, this is my technique currently.
You will need these products, Golden Soft Gel and Golden Polymer Varnish with UVLS (Satin) and a Fixitive of your choice. You may want gloss varnish. These are clear, non-yellowing and flexible when dry and commonly used with collage.
Choose your paper and choose the base you will adhere it to.
I had a stash of purchased gesso primed 1/8 inch hardboard in various sizes, so that's what I used. My paper is what I love most, Arches 140 lb CP. If I like this I will experiement with heavier paper and other bases.
1. Lay out all your supplies: WC paper that has been cut slightly larger than your hardboard, hardboard, Golden Soft Gel, a soft brush (preferably disposable). I had water and a wet rag nearby ready for anything. The soft Gel is really sticky so you might want gloves.
2. Lay a clean piece of matboard or other clean protectant on the table and lay your WC paper FACEDOWN onto the matboard.
3. Spread the Golden Soft Gel on the good (white) side of the hardwood panel and center it on the BACK side of your WC paper.
4. Weight it down. I have a smooth edge piece of glass I use for pressing WC's and I used this and put heavy books on top of it. Let it dry overnight.
5. With a utility knife, trim the edges; I did 3 of them with a new knife in 3 or 4 minutes by laying them on my quilting mat that is smooth and made for cutting. I put them in Clear Bags to protect them until I was ready to use.
6. You're ready to paint! You can do a pencil drawing or have it done prior to gluing. I can't imagine trying to line that up, - you decide. Dry the painting.
7. Lightly spray with a fixitive, I have Krylon, but there are several good ones. This step may be optional, I may experiement.
8. Put your varnish in a container that has room to add 1/4 to 1/3 volume of water to it before you apply it to the painting. Elevate the painting and let the varnish drip off as necessary. You will see tiny bubbles but they will disappear as it dries and levels. Do about 4 coats letting it dry overnight each time.
As a child I began designing my own clothes while in 5th grade. Grandma let me use fabric from her stash and showed me how to use the treadle machine. My love for art and the creative began at that point, always having a current project of some kind. Painting has provided a unique creative outlet for me that I am thankful for, an exciting journey where there's always something new to learn.