Trees of Life

"Trees of Life"
15" x 9"
Watercolor on paper
Sometimes life can't be supported merely by one trunk.  It might take more to hold up all that teeming protoplasm.  

Take the cookie sheet out of the freezer and peel off the plastic wrap be prepared to deal with what has been going on in your absence. There will be ice crystal patterns if it is cold enough.  If you want more texture, sprinkle a wee bit of salt at this point, where you want a snowflake effect.

Keep an open mind to the possibilities.  The "tree trunks" were two large wrinkles that either became very hard-edged or I made harder by stroking not-too-wet paint up to the dry "trunk" lines.

Working the wet areas is a lot of fun.  Keeping the paper wet while on the cookie sheet is the trick to soft edges and being able to work the positive and negative shapes.  Pull off the waxed paper only as you intend to work on an area.  Once it's dry it becomes like working on any other dry painting.

I have sprayed water underneath the art to retard the drying process.

Dabbing with a dry Q-Tip is a good way to correct mistakes. Or use a clean, damp brush to wipe out mistakes, but don't press or scrape too hard.

Make sure not to paint with too much water, it'll make backruns or blossoms.

Enjoy the process.  It's different and fun.  Most watercolorists don't get the luxury of painting slowly into damp paper, acting like oil painters.

For more information on this technique please Google Kathleen Conover.
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