Basics of Watercolour Painting with Cathy Blake

This series of 8 lessons with Cathy Blake will take place at MERA every Friday starting January 20, from 10am to 12pm. These classes will take place during the regular Art Circle schedule. There are still a couple of places available.

An outline of the course is as follows:

  1. Intro to materials needed, stretching paper to avoid buckling, Transparent and semi-transparent colours. Washes wet on dry, wet on wet, other basics. Shadows and highlights. Work from photo of landscape with lots of sky and not too much detail.
  2. Painting with a reduced colour scheme: Pick three colours (or even two); experiment with colours you can mix with them, and paint from a photo.
  3. Composition: several thumbnail sketches from one view; value patterns in composition; paint with restricted colour. Sky washes for interest.
  4. Aerial/atmospheric perspective—colours become paler and bluer in the distance, details fade or disappear. How much detail to put into your paintings?
  5. Still life items: showing form with lights and darks: Using cubic, cylindrical and round forms, we will experiment with depicting 3-D objects.
  6. Trees—bare and leafy, evergreens, textures of. Work on samples of individual trees first, then a composition. Use of rigger brushes.
  7. Painting textures in water colour: wood, bark, feathers, cloth, etc. Use of pens with water colour when wanting very specific effects. Use of salt, spattering, watercolour pencils, and other special effects
  8. Spend the class finishing older work or start a final work of your choice. Or…?.

Payment for members will be $80 for the first 4 classes, and $80 the second 4 classes, totaling $160. Nonmembers will pay $95 for each 4 session set or $190 for all 8.

A list of supplies and more information is available from Helen Mogford,