Step 2 – Iris No. 9 Watercolor Demonstration

Example Of Watercolor Sculpting

I have been watercolor sculpting in sections. Here I am lifting a second layered green wash to reveal the first orange wash layer. For this technique use staining pigments for the first wash or be careful when lifting to prevent all of the underlying pigment from being removed.

Watercolor Sculpting Tips:

1. When painting in sections, forget the subject and look only at the shapes. Begin with the large and medium shapes and go progressively smaller. In this case, there are a lot of interconnecting, curved shapes.

2. Mix up a lot of pigment and work on adjacent shapes as you proceed to achieve unity and harmony.

3. Let the photo be a guide, but be mindful if something does not read well and needs to be altered, simplified or left out. I continually step away from the work and see how it reads from a distance.

4. Use several lifting tools and techniques to achieve a variety of edges. Lift when the surface is wet for soft effects, dry, for more defined, hard edges. Use sponges, brushes, credit cards, etc. or whatever works. Experiment. Discover. See with new eyes.

Is there something else?

Something beyond the surface of things?

–Paula D’Arcy, Waking Up To This Day

2 thoughts on “Step 2 – Iris No. 9 Watercolor Demonstration

  1. Hi Tommy,

    Best advice is to experiment and practice. A lot of variables depending on wetness of paper and pigment qualities. For wet-saturated lifting, I highly recommend taking a workshop from Cheng-Khee Chee. The workshop I took from him in 2007 has had a big impact on my artistic journey. Yes, future plans include teaching watercolor sculpting for iris lovers. Photos of my studio? OK. Be on the lookout 🙂

    Thanks for your comments and questions,

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