Thursday, December 28, 2017

Old Eyes

Back in the Stone Age, at the beginning of my tenth-grade chemistry class, I could read the periodic table over the chalkboard. By Christmas, I couldn't read the weights and numbers, and told my mom, who walked to the phone before I finished talking and made me an appointment with her eye doctor.

I've worn glasses (and contacts) ever since to correct my distance vision.

Now, my eyes are getting old, and my near vision is getting worse. I keep a pair of reading glasses on my craft desk to augment my bifocal contacts, but clearly I need a stronger pair. The close-up of today's card shows a fabulous need for more water to blend the watercolor pencils. To my eyes, the coloring looked awesome! On my computer screen, not so much, especially on the green portions of the flowers.

Having tried so many watercolor techniques and media--from actual professional-grade watercolor paint to watercolor crayons to markers--watercolor pencils remain my favorite. Because they are the easiest. For me, at least.

To make this card, I used Winsor & Newton 90lb hot press watercolor paper, Archival black ink, an aqua brush, and Derwent watercolor pencils.

The variations in the lavender come from coloring each blossom with a blue pencil and then scribbling some violet over that, and blended the two colors with a wet brush. (Not wet enough, apparently, but still). At a distance, the variation lends a bit of interest to the blossoms. I'll go back over the card now that I've seen the close-up photo enlarged on my computer screen...after I buy stronger reading glasses, LOL!

The key is to use just enough water so the two colors don't blend into one completely. My mistake was not using just enough water.

Perfection would be such a bore.

The mat under the stamped panel is cut from the deckle edge of the W&N paper and washed with purple Peerless watercolor. Leaving it natural for a white-on-white mat looked far too blah, and I really like how the deckle looks in purple!

What's your favorite way to watercolor stamped images? What watercolor form/brand do you prefer and why?

Mercy, grace, peace, and love,

stamps: Stemmed Statements (Papertrey)
ink: Archival black
paper: Winsor & Newton 90lb hot press watercolor paper
accessories: watercolor pencils, aqua brush, Peerless Watercolors, wash brush


  1. I’ve got Zig brush markers, peerless watercolor papers, and a plethora of distress inks. So it’s clearly operator error when the finished project looks almost nothing like what I’m imagining. But the pure fun in playing with water and inks/paint is (mostly) worth the disappointment. Out of the bunch of them I think I’m enjoying the Peerless most. I just need more practice.

  2. could not have said it better! Plus I have the products you have & more and perfection has never been a word uttered by me...which is why I love water coloring... it's perfectly imperfect! Anyone who looks at my cards too closely & comments, would not receive another one!

  3. I have Zigs, Derwent pencils, Koi, Gansi Tambi, and even S U watercolor crayons, which shows what an old geezer I am! lol
    Have not mastered any of them, but continue to try. Love the colored deckle edge!
    Lu C

  4. Oh, I love the purple deckle mat! It's the perfect frame for the focal image. The watercolor wash and the deckle edge give an organic look that makes the lavender looks much less structured, something a normal mat, even a colored one, couldn't achieve—brilliant idea.


Thank you so much for taking time to comment!