Wednesday, 28 December 2016

Going Chinese? Marie's Watercolour.

 Chinese have learnt, created and adapted and added the Art of Watercolour in the West to their traditional ways of painting.
They have wonderfully well interpreted landscapes and flowers.

With both styles combined, they create truly awesome paintings

It was time for me to find out a bit more.
I asked Father Christmas to bring me some Chinese watercolour paints.
Are they different to ours? Are the colours more subtle?

Could I mix the styles as they do or would I struggle?

I searched the net to find out if there was some Chinese watercolour sets sold in UK.
I found some.
 The difficulty was to find out how they look,  how they behave etc..
I have decided to give some help to artists that might be tempted to give it a go.

So, I chose Marie's watercolour Chinese watercolour paint. (The alone one on the market)





They come only in small size tubes of 5ml.

I was happily surprised to find that each tube was covered by a protective cap, probably aluminium stuck on the opening.
I wonder if it is to help with the longevity of the paint (in case it hardens like some do..)

I am showing an untouched tube.


Before starting a new medium or new paint, I love experimenting with the colours...


(On ARCHES paper)

Each tube has a number. The rest is written in Chinese and so, there is no way to discover the subtle difference between the Reds of the Blues...

I have made a reference chart. May be one day, I will have to replenish a colour or two.

At first glance, I truly thought the beautiful colours of Winsor Newton did not have to worry about the competition.

I suppose it is while working with these colours, I will appreciate their softness within the tints.

I can imagine a landscape painting with the charm of China or Japan.

Now let me show you if there is any difference of tones between the Chinese paints and the ones I use (Winsor Newton - Sennelier)


I have no difficulty in finding the one I prefer
but I will keep it secret!


I also wanted to know how well they could be lifted from the paper.


As you can see: No problem



I also got some Ink as it is the traditional way of Chinese painting.


They are beautiful.

I will find a way to grind them without to go to further expense.
I will give the results later.

I have experimented with them.

The Ink is permanent. It does not lift.
I dampened one stick and rubbed it on some of my watercolour paper.
Once dried I added some Sennelier watercolour.


Interesting texture

Chinese artists use Rice paper. I have received some too.
I still have to experiment with it but I see no reason why I cannot work on HP watercolour paper.
It is as smooth as the Rice paper.

To follow.....

Let me finish with a  painting by artist Qian Xuan [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

 ON WIKIPEDIA

It is what I call a Chinese traditional painting
Such finesse, beauty within the style... freshness.

13th Century - On scroll - Ink and colours.









Saturday, 10 December 2016

Many thanks to a customer from Ashford in Kent

Many thanks to a customer from Ashford in Kent.

I have just been informed by pixels.com
I have sold another pack of 10 cards of Winter in Dungeness.


I am very grateful to all my buyers.

It encourages an artist to carry on producing...



*

Belated thank you to my customers

Artists have a family life too...
It means that sometimes, it can be disrupted.

I would like to thank

A customer who lives along the Thames in UK who bought from pixels.com

One pack of 10 cards 

1 Card

1 Card



*


Tuesday, 6 December 2016

A thank you to customer from Australia

A very big thank you to a customer from Australia who has ordered 
goods from my store on Pixels.com

You have made my day.
It means, I have to carry on designing...




Giving you a choice with galleries to explore






*

Thursday, 1 December 2016

DETECTIVE WORK! Scam or Genuine email!

Artists are constantly and relentlessly targeted by scam emails 

We need to be on our guard and ready to fight these intruders!

Today I received an email from Artists & Illustrators, they were forwarding me a message left on my Portfolio.

Hum! Nice... may be!

It is not the first time I received messages from the Portfolio on A&I as I suggest on my own website.... "If people are not sure my site is genuine, they can get in touch with me through Artists & Illustrators (My Portfolio)

So here is the message:

First warning by the Magazine: The user is not registered... Most people who contact an artist want to be recognised as genuine too... so they sign.


"Hello Seller"

First mistake. Genuine people call me Beatrice. If they use the term Seller, it has to be a string of multiple messages left to several artists.

"Am interested in immediate purchase of your listed Artwork for Sale on Artists and Illustrators and I would like if it's still available for sale and would love to see our personal website for more artwork if available."

Scammers always tell us they want to purchase immediately. It is a ploy to get you in a panic as we do not like to miss a sale.

Of course they also want to buy several artworks. Think of it... What an offer if you are not tuned to the world of crooks on the internet!

My website address?; It is on the my Profile page!!! 😃

Now as for the turn of phrases and mistakes.... it is the final nail in their box of tricks!

When you are not sure about an email, share it with friends. 
Most of the time, scammers use for their email address, a well known name, mostly dead artists or colonel or poets... all kinds.... It sounds good.

Use Google to research their email address. It can be mentioned in forums by other artists, or be on a list of scammers. Of course this one was the name of an old actress, dead a long time ago... I found her photos but did not know her.

By the way, they wanted to put their claws in this painting:


Tough! you will have to go through FineArtSeen

We will get them !!!!

😝






Wednesday, 30 November 2016

HOW I STRETCH MY PAPER

Each artist works their own way. I do not pretend I know it all.
With more than 35 years playing with watercolour, I have accumulated some knowledge, I have been through time of despair trying to find my own way, bought unnecessary material I was fighting with.

So with this post, I am trying to show you how I stretch my paper.
Each time is perfect result. No wasted paper.

I have no way of showing with a Video. However I have been told a demonstration with photos is good as people can come back on it quicker.. !
I hope it is true.

So First of all, the paper!!!

You need to know the right side of the paper from the wrong side.
Most papers these days are made for the use of both sides.
But it is my belief that if there is a right side it is for some reason.

So here is a Saunders Waterford paper


The name is showing through the paper, if it was the wrong side, it would be reversed.


A TIP: Once I have found the right side, I put a cross in each corner of the sheet of paper.
It allows me to quickly find out which side I am working on, this if I have cut the paper in several pieces.
Notice too, on the left corner, there is a stamp down by Saunders Waterford. Their Logo.
It is raised on the Right side.

TRY TO  KEEP your paper on the right side facing you for when you are going to lay it in the bath for soaking and taking it out and laying it on a board.

Sometimes the paper is sent to you already cut and so some pieces will not show either the label or the stamp.
How to find the right side?

Simple: Look at the edges, on each paper you should have at least one edge, original cut from the factory.

On the Right side of the paper, the edge is not interrupted , it is continuous to the paper.

If you run a pencil against the edge you will meet a resistance as shown with the red pencil mark and the black dots.
It is the wrong side

So Now about soaking the paper.
I soak the paper for about 2 minutes for 300lbs more and you will loose some of its properties..


I run enough cold water and  making sure I do not put finger marks on the paper, I immerse it gently. I hold corners even to push it gently under water.




While it is soaking,
I make sure my MDF board is ready with my staple gun loaded!

By the way, I have bought a very large MDF sheet in B&Q.
My husband cut it in several sizes.
You can request this from the shop, they will cut it for you.

SO


After two minutes, I lift the paper by one corner and let the water drip until there is no more dripping. 
You lay the RIGHT SIDE facing you, on the board, stretching the corner, making sure there no air bubbles under the paper. REMEMBER, no fingers on the paper.
You then fix the paper with the staple gun while stretching again from each corner


As you can notice, there is some buckling but after 30 minutes, it is perfectly flat and dry.
*
There is another way easy way to stretch paper: 



I have bought 2 sizes.

It is perfect! Dry and ready to work on within minutes. 

This is the back of the board.
It comes with black flexing rods 

You can see the Video below:



I will advise you TWO things.

- I do not use a towel as I have left the paper drip in the bath until no further dripping, holding the paper by one corner.
- I DO NOT put my hands or fingers all over the paper.
- I use a small hammer to fix the rods. Do not hit too hard or you might tear the paper.

Before soaking the paper, I cut it to the right size.
You must leave quite of an edge for the return of the paper.

See what I do:


I have a recess of about 2" all around the board.

Below is the Final result within 1/4 of an hour.


Ready to paint on!!!


TIPS:

Prepare you paper before going to bed. It will be ready for the next day.
Or before going shopping. It will be ready on your return!

Thanks to this demo... I have two boards ready for me to work on... Big smile on my face!

***












Monday, 28 November 2016

HOW PAINT BEHAVES ON DIFFERENT PAPERS

I am a great believer in recording, keeping references about the way I work.

How many times I have created a work, used such such colours, or found a trick or two to achieve a glow or a pleasing result only to forget a few months later how I had achieved it!

Frustrating eh?

For this reason I have a scrapbook. It is a real little gem of references.
I would advise all artists in watercolour to start one.

So from my scrapbook, I can now show you:

How paint behaves on different papers.


Notice how on Hot Press paper HP, the paint does not lay out of boundary.
It is reserved  more for an illustration or botanical work.
Notice too how Bockingford paper gives a bright result

*


As you can see I got different results with different paper.

*
If you wish to experiment with different papers but do not want to spend a fortune, try to team with artists to exchange small size samples of different used paper.
I always have some being cut from the side of my finished watercolours.

Coming back to my scrapbook, I strongly recommend creating one. 
It is great fun looking through it after years of findings.

Good luck with yours.

OTHER TIPS

With left overs of paper: 

-create little greeting cards to send to your friends.
-Keep some for sampling your colours prior to lay on a painting
-Or be more savvy and recycle paper by creating your own watercolour paper!

*


Saturday, 26 November 2016

THE WEIGHT OF WATERCOLOUR PAPER!

If it was not enough to have to decide which make of paper is best for our style of painting, to confuse the issue, we have also to choose the weight of the paper.

I know, it is a complete nightmare when we start with watercolour painting!

The weight of a paper is achieved while being manufactured.
It happens under a press

Please watch this information given with ARCHES paper


Almost all artists will tell you not to buy under 300grm or 140lb. It is true!

Under 300 grms you will need to stretch the paper otherwise it will buckle while doing washes, which is very frustrating as the paint settles into the creases when drying. Not what we have in mind for a good result!

However, if you are playing with a lot of water, I would advise to stretch a 300 grms paper.

To play safe, you might want to buy a 638 grms paper (300lb). With this one, you surely will not need stretching.

The one drawback with heavy paper is the heavier it is, the more colour you will need to apply.
The reason being, the colour sinks into the paper leaving a weaker colour while drying than on a thinner paper.

I have worked once on a 90lb (190grms) paper. Because of its low weight, the colours remain very vibrant. I really loved the effect. But... no good with washes. It is reserved for dry brush only.

Personally I do not like to stretch paper. I do it once in a while though.

I like to keep the surface as it is to paint on it. If the paper buckles, when the watercolour is finished and dry, I spray the back of the picture, leave it to dry for 48 hours between heavy books. Do not be tempted to have a look, you would disturb the drying time and mess up everything.



And Now we have the surface to think about!

You buy the paper: HP (hot press) NOT (cold press) ROUGH

HP is mostly for illustration work. I have tried to do washes on it, but it did not behave the way I wanted. Some artists use it too for charcoal or pencil drawing, something I will try.

NOT is the surface I like best. It has a very small tooth. I absolutely love this surface for my work.

ROUGH, says it all. A rough surface with a tooth greater than the NOT. It is good for landscape. 

Next time... how I stretch my paper.

PREVIOUSLY: 





Wednesday, 23 November 2016

PAPER -FOR COMPLETE NOVICE WITH WATERCOLOUR PAINTING

Twice in a week, people have told me they were going to start painting in watercolour.

Not knowing if they were going to like it, they do not want to spend much money in equipment. 

My concern is when one of them told me the experiment will be on ordinary paper as Watercolour paper is too expensive.
In the past too many friends told me they had abandoned Watercolour as 
"they did not get on with it"

PAPER


Ordinary paper is a great NO NO...
Painting watercolour on this kind of paper, will put off watercolour painting forever.
It is as bad as experimenting Oil on Glass.

There are ways to get watercolour paper that are on the cheap side:

A pack of 20  Mini starter paper can be bought for £8.95
with Ken Bromley
An excellent way to test paper behaviour


There is enough paper in this pack to give an idea how the colours behave and what can be done with watercolour.

MY PERSONAL EXPERIENCE WITH PAPER

I started with Bockinford paper. I did love it all these years ago.
They changed the production.
I no longer liked it!!!
So I had to do some experiments...
Just now I love working with: 
Arches - Saunders Waterford - Fabriano Artistico.
To my surprise, I have found that some paper do not behave twice the same way.
This is due to the press losing its felt and not being as efficient.
The best of paper can also have some flaws ...
Artists have to know how to adapt to different papers but also different behaviour.

If you are starting:
I would advise you to find out which paper you would love to work with.
Once you have made your choice, stick to it until you find your style and way to paint.
Buy one large sheet of paper that you can cut to pieces.
Some Online shops offer to cut the paper for you to the size required.

You might like to see how St Cuthberts Mill produces Saunders Waterford paper



My next post will be about colours and brushes.

*

Friday, 18 November 2016

Why and How!

I have had a lovely morning, visiting The Grand in Folkestone.

Folkestone Art Society is holding their beautiful art exhibition in one of the grand rooms.

There is an array of different styles, different mediums with paintings of all sizes and sculptures too.

There was quite a while I had exchanged Art views with other artists, by this I mean face to face..

I have met a few of them and had a great time chatting for an hour about the merit of Oil, Acrylic, Watercolour, Pastel.

One artist showed me his own paintings and explained to me the meaning of it. He also told me, lately he was adding poems by his paintings.

Well, I thought it was a brilliant idea.

I must say, there has been a while I have been able to visit an Art exhibition and I made a discovery!

Looking at a painting on a wall, means looking at a painting. It either talks to you or it does not.
It can be very beautiful but to motivate a viewer and a possible buyer, the artist needs to give an explanation about the creation. The Why and How.

This gentleman's painting was brilliant but when I was told Why and How he had created it, the work took in my eyes another dimensional meaning. It brought emotion. I saw the painting differently and loved it a lot more.

So artists, do explain to your viewers what has motivated you to create, why? how?
The viewer will be more engaged into your work.

After all Art is all about Emotions!

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

WEBSITES DISTRUPTION - Paintings for sale

Knowing that most of my followers read my post on this blog...

Just to inform you my page Paintings for sale on

is not working properly

Nothing wrong with the site. I was trying to display the paintings on larger format.

As it slowed down the site, I decided to transfer them to another site.

In a few days my Paintings for Sale will be on:


Hopefully with more details and also, showing paintings that are too large and heavy to send and so will be available from my studio only.

To see the paintings, Contact me on my website.
I will give you my phone number and address.


***

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

FOLKESTONE ART SOCIETY EXHIBITION


If you are around Folkestone between 12th November and the 20th,
Come and have a look at Folkestone Art Society Autumn's exhibition

I understand it is a real treat with great many paintings to view.

I have just joined the Society. I will have one painting hanging there.

*




Saturday, 5 November 2016

Friday, 4 November 2016

Featured in CINQUE PORTS MAGAZINE - November 2016

Many thanks to the Editor of Cinque Ports Magazine for
featuring my work and article about our beautiful town of Hythe in Kent

It is a treasured corner of the South Coast of England that is perishing under 
the hands of developers, with the blessing of our Council SDC!

We will never regain what is being lost!
I hope my paintings and those of other artists will be telling and showing to the future generations how beautiful was Hythe.







*

Saturday, 29 October 2016

Friday, 28 October 2016

Spectacular on Folkestone harbour


Oil on Linen 91 cm x 59 cm

A few years back, I produced a watercolour of this scenery.
Although the family thought it was too good to let it go, I was really never happy with it.
I wanted a very large picture.
When I witnessed this sunset, late November, on a cold day, I was in awe
in front of its beauty.

At last I have achieved my dream.

It is now drying. I might put if for sale or wait for an exhibition? Who knows!

SELLERS AND BUYERS BEWARE!

Artists and Craft creators are once more targeted by scammers and thieves.

The new trend coming this time from China. Chinese  steal photos of Art for sale or craft for sale,
they open a shop (some on Amazon), post photos of the work
and put them for sale.

People think they are buying from legitimate artists but NO.
They loose their money as they will never receive the work!

The SOLUTION is for people to be aware.

Buy only from reputable sites and real artist's websites.

If buyers are in doubt, get in touch with the artist.

Since my posting:

One artist has found one of her work for sale on Amazon.com
I double checked the link.
Indeed, a print of a work was for sale by an individual who had opened a shop on Amazon.
I am terribly surprised to find out this person, had no profile.
We could not find out anything about him.
So why Amazon let people start selling if they are not double checked?

It is so bad for buyers and artists who are being robbed of their integrity.

I have contacted Amazon. It will be interesting to find if I receive an answer.


Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Original v Print?

I am probably biased to think everybody should own a little original work of Art.

When I was in my twenties, I do remember visiting a young couple who did not have much money to spend but were so proud to have a little original painting hanging on the walls of their front room.

They had acquired it in an auction room at a price they could afford.
They told me: Better have an original than several  prints.

How right they were! By now, their original has most probably gone up in price.

Being the daughter of an artist, I saw original paintings on our walls everyday.
Visiting friends or family, made me aware how lucky I was.

The print market of today has taken Art by storm.
There will always be the Limited Edition prints of Originals by artists.
Those are valuable. They can increase in value but not guarantied.
Some are expensive to buy, probably the same amount than some original.

I am not going to shoot myself in the foot as I sell Originals and Prints!

I recognise that good prints are a way to decorate a home.
I heard so many times people saying they were buying such or such picture as it was the same colour than their walls.

When they change the decor, the print probably ends up in a tip.

Acquisition of an original is much researched.
It has to be for life and with a bit of luck, later will end up with a profit.



Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Zorba featured on Redbubble


Zorba
My first Coloured pencils painting
has been featured on Redbubble
by the group
Cat's Pajamas & Dog's TuxedoThe Art Group for cat and dog lovers.

Delighted!

Monday, 17 October 2016

My latest watercolour "Winter in Tenterden"


I have truly enjoyed painting this watercolour.
I have visited Tenterden very often. It is not far from my home.
A very quaint town, a place for artists too.

I have previously done an Oil of this view.

Art Material Update

I am sure you would like to know about my experience with
a new supplier Cornelissen.

They are new for me! and what a great experience it was.
You can find all about it on my previous posting

Sunday, 16 October 2016

New Cushions/Pillows with luxury collection by Vida






A special offer by VIDA on all Vida products in my Boutique


Do not forget to use the Code RLNP-CG3F at check out.


Saturday, 8 October 2016

Village Provence - New watercolour

Once in a while I get nostalgic, missing my beautiful France.

How much I would have loved to be able to do some beautiful shots of the place while I was going on holidays there
Digital cameras did not exist.
I had three young children and did not find much time to sketch and less again to paint.

I was exploring images of France when I stumbled on a beautiful photo I could purchase to use for a painting.

I would not do so very often as I like my own composition.
However, I could not resist to escape and paint this pretty little Village of Provence, under the sunshine, in the middle of the Alpes!

Thank you to the photographer.


Pure watercolour on Arches paper

Message from FINEARTSEEN.com and many thanks to my followers!

A few weeks ago, I entered a painting into a competition on FineArtSeen

This morning, I have received this email:

Thank you for your submission to FineArtSeen Untitled Art Award.
We are delighted to inform you that you have been selected to enter the final round of judging for the prize.

In addition, we are pleased to invite you to exhibit with us at our first ever Spring/Summer Exhibition in London next year, where the winner and runners-up will be announced.....


So, a big thank you to all my supporters who voted for my painting!!!

Friday, 7 October 2016

CARDS ARRIVED in CALIFORNIA.

It is always a treat for me when my work arrives the other side of the world without any delay and my customer is happy.

It is not the first time I send pictures to America. I have never had any problems.

Thank you to the lady who bought my cards on Etsy and left me such brilliant review!



Here is the Review:


These are amazingly lovely. They are much more beautiful than in the photo. The scenes draw you in and give you a sense of peace and balance. This very talented artist has captured the feeling of a more gentle world. You can almost smell the flowers and feel the road under your feet. They're a lovely place to wander to when you need to "get away" for a few minutes. I'm having them framed so I can enjoy them and at the same time share them with friends. These cards are worth every penny and I will be back to buy from Beatrice again.

Again a big thank you to the buyer!

Saturday, 1 October 2016

UPDATE WITH VIDA DESIGNS

Obviously these designs are quality made from designers around the world!
I feel pretty smart to have been asked to create a shop on Vida.

The products are expensive but probably reserved to a special clientele ..

Below some of my added designs:

Click on the pictures to be taken to the present collection



As soon as possible, I will be working on more designs


Tuesday, 27 September 2016

New products with VIDA

I have received a couple of emails by Vida, inviting me to use my designs
on their products.

I was not too sure about the invitation and was not prepared to loose my time downloading designs.
It is very laborious! the size and scanning have to be right.

However, their last email got me convinced.

So I have started with two simple products.



I think they both look stunning!

There are more products to come...

Friday, 23 September 2016

A watercolour for Sale!


For sale with FineArtSeen.com

Another Pure watercolour!

Which website builder?

Another question I am being asked again and again.

"Where did you build your website?"

I have had some very bad experiences with Website providers!

I will not put their names on this blog as I do not want to be prosecuted.

One, very well known for their adverts, seduced me into taking an account with them.
The scenario is such:

A good website for as little as : £ xxx

As soon as you have signed, your realise, as an artist, there is not much space to display photos of your work. So you have to upgrade to the higher price and trust me it is a HIGHER PRICE!

It did not stop there... more and more they were offering possibilities for improvements with added money.

I was getting worried about it.
One day, I could no longer access my site online. It was displaying on the screen, I was needing a password. My password was no longer working
My visitors had the same message. I received numerous emails from people trying to have access to my pages and could no longer do so.
Not very good when the same week, a magazine was giving me a feature!!!

I got in touch with the server who told me, they did not know what was happening, the system would be back online pretty soon.
Alas, a fortnight later, after multiple phone calls, nobody could help me.
I was finally sent to a call centre in the Philippines!!!
Nobody could understand what I was explaining and they did not care at all.

I had just renewed my yearly fees. I was gutted!

I went on Facebook, found their page, and read protests from their many clients who had the same problem as I had!!! Nobody got answers.
They were letting everybody down. Some lost their online business!

I asked for my money back. It took a while to get it but I did and left them.

The next Website provider was good price wise but the building of website was a total nightmare!

I did wonder if there was any being good.

At last I found Weebly!

A website where I could start by building a free one with as many photos as I wanted, as many pages, use of all the tools.
Superb website builder.
videos to help you.
Forum community where we can help one another.

It was free as long as I was using their address .weebly.com
So a website called : www.janesmith.weebly.com would be free.
You need to pay if you take a .com or co.uk
You then got a Pro account where you can build as many as 10 sites.

Very good if you have more than one business or need more space for your website.

I have been with Weebly for about 3 years now and am glad to be with them!

I would recommend it strongly. 

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

A sale in my shop on Etsy

Besides FineArtSeen.com where I sell my major works,
I have a small shop on Etsy where I am trying to sell
some of my watercolours.

Today I had a sale! It is now on its way to California!
Thank you to the buyer.


Member of the Jury in International contest

I am so honoured to be with the jury in this amazing contest. Do not forget to enter! https://internationalwatercolourmasters.com