Thoughts for Beginning Watercolorists

Learning to paint watercolor may be weird and hard at first, more so if one is accustomed to more opaque mediums. Since watercolor is transparent you must decide from the very beginning where the areas of white will be in your painting. I’ve gotten a lot of information from reading on the Arts and Music In Depth Blog. If anyone is new at this like me, a good (maybe the best) overview I’ve seen is at

For me, one of the best tips given is:

“Your drawing will look better if the most interesting part ( called the centre of interest ) is not placed along either of the pages centre lines. The strongest tonal ( light / dark ) contrast should be placed at the centre of interest. Have some areas of the drawing less detailed than others. Try and keep most of the detail in the area of the centre of interest.

“To gain confidence, practice drawing on large sheets of cheap paper with a soft (5B or 6B) pencil, charcoal, or pastel pencil. Stand up, work on a vertical surface (or surface at right angles to your line of vision) and move your arm from the shoulder. Work from large and bold to fine and detailed. Only the final finishing off needs to be done with small, tight hand movements.”

I’m afraid my talent is quite lacking, but I’m going to give it my best! They say that practice makes perfect, and I believe that is true. But free time for practice is an essential element that I have very little of. Perhaps I need to enroll in a course in ‘time management’. If only I had time to take the course! Of course I’ll keep watching the Arts and Music In Depth Blog for any other info I can use.

There is one question that I can’t seem to find the answer to – can I use oil and/or acrylic brushes to do watercolors? I know that brushes are packaged for different uses. However, it seems to me that for all practical purposes one could use those other brushes for watercolors. But perhaps I am missing something something, so I’ll keep searching for a definitive answer. Wish me luck!