Step 7 – Iris No. 9 Watercolor Demonstration

What’s Wicking Power?

In last week’s post, I mentioned sable brushes were the best choice for lifting color on wet and/or saturated paper due to their wicking power.

A thirsty sable is great for absorbing wet pigment (lifting) and softening edges without damaging the paper.

A thirsty brush is a damp brush with excess water removed.

In the above photo, I am using two sables. The larger one has color in it.

The smaller is a thirsty brush which I use to stroke along the edge of the color just laid in to soften the edge.

This is best done immediately while the paint is still wet.

This technique is a great way to hint at fine lines without the lines looking labored and too defined.

And That’s Not All…

Instead of painting the lines —

Use sable’s soft touch to lift the color between the lines to create form.

In the photo above, using the sable, I have re-wet the dark gold area.

In a few seconds, I go back in with a thirsty sable and gently lift the color.

See the form being created?

I love this push and pull effect of direct painting some of the lines with softened edges along with lifting shapes between some of the other lines.

Creative techniques are never through being developed,

Any more than nature is ever through evolving. 

–Maxine Mansfield

2 thoughts on “Step 7 – Iris No. 9 Watercolor Demonstration

  1. Hi Donna,

    Thanks for your question.

    Scroll to Step 1 to see a photo and list of the colors I’m using.

    Specifically, in step 7 I’ve mixed cad red and olive green to neutralize and then added varying amounts of cad yellow to make the rich gold. The sable lifts the heavier pigment revealing the soft gold. The photo in step 1 shows this mix on the palette too.

    Hope this helps,

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