DIY Watercolour Palette

I love watercolours, they are a challenging medium to experiment with but they also allow us to have a looseness to our work that can’t be replicated in other mediums.  If I find myself overworking an artwork, I’ll transition into watercolours for a bit to help relax.

They can also be an expensive medium to invest in.  I live in the country and buy my supplies online, so I take advantage of all the sales.  However I know that isn’t always easy for everyone and sometimes you want to just buy one thing to use for the next ten years.  My business advisor asked me how much I had to spend a year on supplies to run my business.  Well..... like any creative I could spend every cent....

Now I’ve started running a lot more watercolour workshops I’ve had to expand into acquiring more supplies as I promise you everyone will want the same colour.  This is a DIY palette I recently created which makes it easy to transport and choose a colour.

i have a lot of wet tube watercolours and when I do use them I tend to squeeze out too much which is a waste.  They are difficult to transport and a pain to clean up after during a workshop.  So I bought this empty palette off of eBay and filled each compartment with a colour, trying to keep similar colours together.  I have let it dry and when I need to use the paint I just add a little bit of water like you would a dry palette.  When I’ve finished I just pack it away and the water evaporates, making the watercolours dry again.  It is working great!

A smaller size would be fine for beginners, I just opted for a large one as I already had a large stockpile of colours that I wanted to use.  Most of these colours are Art Spectrum

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Sunday funday

No more procrastinating.  I’ve researched my heart out, I’m full of inspiration and it is time to paint.  I find painting the big canvas works to be a cycle, where I will consistently paint for a few weeks and then need a break of a week or two to do something else like my watercolours to recharge.

This is my current WIP. 

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I started this one around 18 months ago just after I moved into our forever home and unpacked my studio space.  Initially she was horizontal, sleeping, with her head on some leaves and the Autumn leaves falling around her.   However she just never wanted to be finished.  The work was dark, moody, in tones of reds and browns and honestly..... depressing.  Knowing I had and exhibition looming I thought finishing off conavases that were not completed was an important task.  This exhibition is deeply personal and signifies a fresh start, time to give them new life.

So she has transformed into a work that has given me goosebumps and butterflies in my stomach as she unfolds into this beautiful woman in a magical dream state.  I can’t wait to reveal the whole painting that I’ve titled “Awake Asleep”.  She’s a big one at 60cm x 91cm (23.5” x 36”).

Mushrooms make me think of little creatures

Painting and drawing bugs has brought memories to mind.  Of the days as a family we would trek through the forest on our camping adventures to happen upon bright weird shaped mushrooms that would sprout from dead tree trunks and rotting wood.  White, red, brown, orange.... all the shapes and colours you could imagine.  So naturally painting them has always been on my to do list. 

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Watercolour on Arches paper