Many thanks to Sharla of Beaded Tail for letting me do these paintings of her darling fur babies! (And for her patience when I had some delays, too.) It was so fun to have Isabella, Angel, and Sadie keep me company while I was painting. What precious furries!
When I paint in watercolor, I like to keep most of my brush strokes soft and loose - however, the faces need a lot of detail. Some of the detail comes from using darker paint to draw your attention to things like the eyes. You will note that I said 'darker paint'. Contrary to the appearance of these painting, there is no black paint on any of them. In fact, there is no black paint on my palette. In my blog post, No room for black on my palette, I explain how I mix 'chromatic black' which gives a much richer color than using a tube of black paint.
As a finishing touch, I also like to use gouache (an opaque watercolor) to add a little 'sparkle'. Here you have a 'before and after' of Sadie. On the left you see the finished painting and on the right you see the painting before I added a few little highlights.
|Adding a little gouache.|
The effect is very subtle, but it really makes a difference - especially in person. It's really fun to add the gouache on animals because it can be used to highlight little bits of hair - of which they have a lot.
Large areas of white are actually the unpainted watercolor paper. For these paintings I used a fairly bright white paper which also adds a nice reflective quality to all the colors. Light bounces off of the paper and through the transparent watercolor. That's what makes watercolors glow.
Well, what do you think of these little paintings?
hmmmm *taps chin* now I wonder what little critter I will paint next...