This is a two part exercise. First, you will be working dark to light and then, light to dark, working on gessoed backgrounds. On the white gessoed background you will be using dark watercolor and on the black gessoed background you will be using white gouache.
I loved this exercise, I think it just might be my most favorite yet. Maybe it's because she reminds me a little bit of my grandma or maybe it's the way the watercolor rests on top of the gesso, allowing me to rework it as needed. This way of painting with watercolor is much more forgiving than working on plain watercolor paper.
Add a layer of gesso to your paper. You can use any paper for this, I used watercolor paper.
Allow the gesso to dry. Sketch out your image using a medium to soft pencil.
Look for the darkest values and begin to fill in the areas with watercolor. I used a damp paper towel to lift off some of the watercolor when I needed to lighten up an area.
If you would like you can add water marks to your piece by splashing a little water on top, allowing it to soak in, then using a towel to blot it off. You can also add a few streaks of color, if you would like.
Supplies Used: Gesso. Watercolor paper. Qor Watercolors. White gouache. Watercolor brushes.