Watercolor Painting en Plein air
We diagrammed a pastel artwork in another post about painting clouds at sunset and explained a bit about the types of clouds one may encounter when painting outdoors. But what should you do when painting clouds in watercolor?
Watercolor artists generally paint from light to dark, carefully building up tones in successive layers, while preserving the white of the paper where necessary.
While I do often work in this premeditated system when in the studio, painting en plein air, in strong sun and perhaps wind, demands a slightly different approach if I am to be successful. The main problem that arises when plein air watercolor painting is that wet washes and the paper itself can dry just as I am trying to work a nice graded wash across the sheet.
This can often produce unwanted edges and unfinished washes, which then require reworking, losing the very freshness I am trying for. It’s frustrating and may be the reason there don’t seem to be as many plein air watercolor painters out there. Continue reading.