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Painting Clouds In Watercolors

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The artist in this video demonstrates how you can achieve a very atmospheric sky using a wet on wet watercolor technique which unveils storm-like cumulus clouds set over the sea.

The watercolor paper has been pre wet to leave a surface moisture which will work organically with the watercolors which the artist applies with only two different types of brush – A flat 1 inch brush and a medium round watercolor brush. The 1 inch brush is the dominant brush and is used to cover larger areas of the composition and also has the benefit of being able to hold more watercolor paint making it much easier to apply and flow onto the watercolor paper.

Using a few unusual techniques the watercolor artist quickly gets to work on the painting. He flicks the paint onto the paper carefully choosing his position to flick the paint making sure he leaves the natural white of the paper to form the fluffy storm clouds. The watercolors he uses seem to be a darker blue like an ultramarine and also a mixture of browns like umber which retains a more orange hue to contrast the moody blues. The watercolors are quite literally loaded on to the brushes and flicked onto the paper leaving specks of paint that are then worked into the paper using both the round and the flat brush.

The video is shot in actual time and it is fantastic to see what sort of a result can be achieved in such a short amount of time using just a few basic techniques and a bit of artistic flare. There are many different ways and techniques for painting clouds in watercolors where you can blot the paint or even introduce the likes of mediums such as masking fluid to create and retain negative space to highlight the clouds, but I feel this video is just as important as any in understanding how versatile watercolor paints are and just how effective they are as a medium for creating atmosphere.

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