Going solo – the hard truth

Today I decided to take the leap, and have a go at a watercolour painting with no use of any help or tutorials.

It shows.

I wanted to paint a lighthouse we visited in California a few years ago, driving the Highway 1.

It looked like this:

IMG_2852

There are so many opportunities here, which I didn’t take advantage of.

The rusty paint on top of the lighthouse.

The dark steel constructions next to it (which would make a really cool contrast.

The worn out roof on top of the house beneath it.

I should have used more time thinking about all of this before I started, and not afterwards..

Anyway, I started with a quick sketch:

Quick sketch

The house in the center is ok, I think.

The house on the right is a little to basic.

The lighthouse is too crooked.

I should’ve used more time and precision drawing it.

Not a good starting point.

Then I did the wash:

Wash

The colours in the grass is pretty decent.

For the sky I did a second wash, because I wasn’t all  that happy with a few spots.

In retrospect I should’ve left it alone, and try to save it in the second layer.

Also, the paint around the lighthouse is awfully imprecise.

I should’ve just left the whole lighthouse unpainted, and kept all of the blue paint outside.

On the house in the center I should have left some light areas, so I could’ve used it for highlights later on.

Then came the final layer:

Lighthouse in California

There’s one thing I like about this painting.

The grass – both the coulours and the details – are quite nice (even though the paper probably wasn’t completely dry when I added the black paint).

The rest is no good!

The house is overpainted.

The lighthouse is a complete mess.

The flag looks terrible.

The small house in the background is not even worth a comment.

I’m not trying to be negative here, but that’s just the hard truth.

This is just bad.

But I’ve decided to show both the good and the bad on this site, so I’ll stick to it.

I’ll try to forget this painting.

Maybe I’ll even have a second go at it with a fresh paper, to try and make amends.

The coulours play nice together, though 🙂

2 thoughts on “Going solo – the hard truth

    1. Thanks, Phil 🙂 I also like the perspective, and the colours are a good match. I just didn’t get the “watercolour look” on it. Probably too much paint. But, as you say, onward and upward! 😀

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