I promised a further review of Jean's book when I had finished reading it and had worked through it a bit more so, as I don't break promises here is how I'm getting on....
Am doing a lot of little exercises at the moment, often using Jean's book Atmospheric Watercolours and I do think I am finally getting the hang of things. Loose is not for the faint hearted, but I am learning to "invite" the colour to soften hard, unattractive edges and also how to tease the paint across the paper using very little pressure. Am normally like a bull at a gate but can feel myself lightening up and getting more control. This is an exercise from the book, the first not so good and I realised I hadn't followed the step by step as well as I might, but I think the second is showing some promise!!
So things I like about them both but what I am much more interested in, is how practising these techniques are helping me get a feel for things when it comes to my own work. Someone at my last demo said I make things look easy and I think that is a real compliment and one I was delighted to hear. And it really is down to years of practise just like doing these exercises which I will do time and time again.
Something I am coming to realise which my friend Roy Simmons has said to me on more than one occasion is that a successful painting can happen in as little as 15 minutes (not often but you get the idea... I mean fast!!!) but what isn't taken into account is the years of hard work and practise it has taken to get the experience to be able to produce that painting.
We are a prepared to pay fairly for the services of a tradesman who has spent years, learning his craft then building up his experience but are we as willing to accept the same principles for artists? Would be interested to hear your views in that one!!!
Anyway I am also using the book as bedtime reading and then exercising such incredible self restraint as everytime I pick it up it really does make me want to go and paint. For me that is actually the best thing about this book. It is inspiring me to try all the exercises which can then be used for my own work using the techniques I am learning as all the exercises are of subjects we all love to paint, bridges,doors,animals, flowers etc, everything is there for me to pick up as and when I have a subject I want to paint. Hmmm you have lot to live up to for the next book Jean!!!!
This is a link to the original review