12 x 16 Watercolor
by Pat Fiorello
This is a demo painting I did at the workshop I recently taught at The Bascom in Highlands North Carolina. The workshop was specifically on "Capturing the Essence of Flowers in Watercolor". One lesson specifically addressed how to paint white flowers since in watercolor we don't typically use any white paint.
Here was the set up of white hydrangeas lit from the left.
I next added a background so you could better see the shape of the hydrangeas. It's hard to know where the edge of the white flowers are when the background is also white. On a painting of a colored flowers, I might do the entire painting of the flowers and then come in with the background at the end, but here I wanted to eliminate any unnecessary white paper to better judge the white flowers.
The flowers might look dark, however once I started adding the dark leaves, the value of the the flowers looked more accurate.
The painting as it stood at the end of the demo is pictured as the first photo on this blog. I may make some further adjustments to refine the leaves. But will revisit in a few days to re-look and decide if it's done or if some adjustments may improve it. It's always a judgment call to avoid going too far and overworking your initial impression.
Here are a few of the students having fun painting their lovely flowers.
I'll be back at The Bascom later this summer teaching a 3 day workshop on Painting Landscapes in Watercolor, Aug 26-28. For more information or to register on-line see: