Masked-Wash Still Life

Some pears on a window sill.  Start with a pencil outline, traced with Masking fluid. Wait for it to dry, and start adding a wash. 


The proper way, or least another way, is to tilt up the page and apply so much paint to the top that it forms a bead along the bottom of the painted area. Because it stays  wet in the bead, the edge of the bead does not leave a line on the page. You then mix some more, maybe changing the tone, and then add more paint, moving the bead slowly down the page. 

All I’m doing so far, is to wet the page area and flood it with colours, that bleed into each other. 


Before and after removing the masking fluid:

I add a background layer of Naples Yellow to the pears, and then attempt a pale purple shadow. I add a drop of Lamp Black to make it go mottled on the paper, but I overdo it and it’s just grey. 


Building up the colours is fun. After a while I think I’m finished and I try it in a rough mount:


I decide that I’m happy about the masked edge of the wash. It forms an edge in the top of the pears and I leave the ‘inside’ edge unpainted and happily the pears appear washed out in bright light. But The bodies of the pears don’t all present their proper shape from a distance. So I return with Veridian Green, and also mix some Naples Yellow. 

I then lift the contrast and saturation with Snapseed (!)

Last step is to pop it in a frame, and then realise I’ve used the wrong side of the nice textured watercolour paper 🤔

Finally I can’t resist some variations by Prisma. 

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