Monday, August 7, 2017

Art: Duck Gourd III

Three duck gourds on a lake of blue cloth.

Yes, I'm one of those weird painters who doesn't actually care about Western-style realism or naturalism, and I find I care less and less about single-point/dual-point perspective. If I make a mistake, I generally don't lift it, and I let accidents occur as they may and do my best to adapt to them instead of removing them. And sometimes I just leave the accidents where they are.

Duck Gourd I was an abstract, though representational, piece, and here is Duck Gourd II.

Here I added some more duck gourds to make a trio of duck gourds, sitting on blue spun silk. Most of this is being drawn from my memory and created there.

Technique's a bit different—sepia inks, then a smoky quartz (a watercolor paint mix of my own from two pigments, viridian and quinacridone magenta) wash. Over the wash, gouache (titanium white) and watercolor laid down (lemon yellow, organic vermilion, phthalo green blue shade, phthalo blue red shade, indanthrone blue, permanent brown, a touch of quinacridone purple and quinacridone rose).

This painting ended up using 11 of my 14 colors in my palette box. An unusually high number, but every subsequent color in the painting was a very quick mix instead of painstaking mixing experiments. A very decent reduction of mixing work (though I love color mixing) in favor of actual painting (which generates an end product, so I can't complain too much).

I used a pocket-sized Pentalic AquaJournal, which has some of the nicest non-cotton watercolor paper I've ever used.

A series of process shots below. I did indeed only use the white gouache for the wall, and plain old watercolors (usually applied fairly thickly) for the rest. The initial smoky quartz wash managed to unify the colors despite quite a few of them being used, far more than I'm normally comfortable with.

Eight process shots for "Duck Gourd III".

Ava Jarvis is an ink and watercolor artist with a portfolio site at If you found this post useful, consider a one-time tip or supporting Ava on Patreon.