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Digital Subscriptions > Leisure Painter > May-19 > Letters




I have always painted in watercolour so I am used to painting from light to dark, being the rule of thumb for this medium. There are times I will use white gouache on its own or added to other colours in small areas to create highlights or add texture. I would like to paint with gouache, but as it can be used transparently or opaquely I am confused about how you approach the light over dark or dark over light aspect.

Sue Arnold

Murray Ince ( replies: The truly liberating thing about using gouache rather than watercolour is the ability, as you say, of being able to work from light to dark. This is due to the make up of gouache, which comprises very finely ground pigments, the same as those used in watercolour, but with a higher proportion of pigment to binder. This makes gouache much more opaque and gives it much greater covering power.

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About Leisure Painter

Welcome to the May issue of Leisure Painter. This month we have practical advice, step-by-step demonstrations and instructional features on drawing and painting with watercolour, acrylics, ink, oils and coloured pencil. Try 12 confidence-boosting exercises to help you draw and paint figures, be inspired by the travel posters of the 1930s to produce contemporary-looking poster-like paintings, and learn to paint a plethora of subjects, including landscapes, animals, birds, flowers, seascapes and more. Enjoy your month of painting with Leisure Painter.