Most new watercolour paintings begin with a pencil sketch. I heightened the contrast on this photograph to make the lines seem more noticeable.
I also applied masking fluid/frisket to the foreground and bird since I wanted to start by painting the background first.
I applied a thick layer of paint for the background using Quinacridone Gold, Pyrrol Blue and Pyrrol Scarlet. It appears very vibrant since it’s still quite wet.
Watercolour dries 20-30% lighter (on average). You can clearly see the difference.
Unfortunately I had a puddle of water on the centre of my paper which caused some blossoming.
When it was fully dried, I tried painting another layer of paint over the background to try to hide the blossoming. I regret this. The more I touched the background, the more the paint underneath lifted. It resulted in a lot of brush marks.
This caused me to go on and learn more about glazing more effectively.
I also attempted to paint the mid-ground bushes. I realised at this point that a lot of tutorials online about painting distant foliage and very detailed foliage, but not many tutorials about painting mid-ground foliage. My attempts resulted in what can be assumed as foliage, but an unsatisfactory look.
I then focused on painting the aged wooden planks that made up the fence. I wanted these tinged slightly blue to suggest that it had been many years since they had been painted and cared for – the rustic look.
Finally I worked on the foreground rose vines, the yellow roses and the blue bird.
Being so unsatisfied with the background, I decided to not spend too much time on the foreground as the main purpose of doing this painting was to practice dark backgrounds and wood textures.
The finished painting: