Dartmoor stream and old bridge - an experiment with foam rollers with watercolour

Detail scanned:  An Old Packhorse Bridge on the edge of Dartmoor.   Watercolour and mixed media, Vivien Blackburn

This one was an experiment with some foam rollers I'd bought at the weekend, working from a plein air sketch I'd done.   Also an experiment with Bristol board  (very smooth) as it's only the second time I've used it - the first was with oil paints in Cornwall.

I swept the rollers over several colours that I wanted to appear in the trees and put them down with one line - it gave a wonderful speckled appearance  that I later adjusted with glazes.   I love these rollers!

Then I used it to put background sweeps and areas of colour for the foliage, grasses and stonework, before working into them with brushes and watercolour, gouache, coloured pencil (a very little), oil pastel and charcoal pencil.

They were extremely cheap and are going to become one of my favourite tools I think.

I've often used much larger paint rollers with oil paint on canvas but never with watercolour like this.

The top image is a scan - I can't fit the whole piece in my A4 scanner so below is a photo of the whole.   There is some copper oil pastel in the stonework that is catching the light in the photo - it's much more subtle than that in real life.

About 11 inches square

Have you got any favourite tools you use with paints?

and ps do look at this amazing video of clouds, skies, stars in slo mo


Papierflieger said…
That is a wonderful piece Vivien!
Beautiful colors and structures everywhere.
Margo said…
You have been doing the most amazing work lately Viv! I have been taking a break from the daily posting on WC, it hurts my poor hands and then I can't paint. Well I want to paint and I want to say that your posts always spur me on to do so. Thank you my friend!
vivien said…
Oh Margo you have my sympathy - with me it's my knees that are arthritic and getting really bad - it's horrible the way that these things limit you.

Thank you both :>)
annie said…
So lovely, Vivien. The lights and shadows give that mixed feeling one gets in dappled sunlight-- warm here and cool there. And I am so caught by the colors on the tree trunks.
Anita said…
I love these two - especially the second. If only ................ struggling with artist envy here! I have to learn to experiment more.
vivien said…
thank you :>)

the colour changes and warm/cool are what I like

get some tools like the rollers Anita to give you lots of free marks initially - combs, credit cards, palette knife (even with watercolours) and just go for it - then work into it to clarify and adjust areas. I know you can do it :>)
Anita said…
Vivien - I wish I had your faith!!! Hard to let go of the control freak in me!

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