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Watercolour basics and beyond

Part 1 David Webb begins his year-long series on watercolour painting with a look at the basic materials you can choose, before introducing your first essential technique – the flat wash

David Webb

Nasturtium , watercolour on Arches watercolour paper, 13x912⁄ in. (33x24cm). The 240gsm Arches paper was lovely to work on. Although the paper is a little thin for washes, it was fine once I stretched it onto a board. I cover stretching paper in the February issue.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

Understand the materials you need for watercolour painting

Practise your first technique: the flat wash

How to paint glass objects

I’ve tried several media over the years, but I always return to watercolour. I love the transparency of the medium, and how you can create atmospheric and moody paintings with just a jar of water, a few tubes of colour, a decent brush and a good sheet of paper.

Although it can be occasionally frustrating to use, the feeling you have when a beautiful, clean wash appears before your eyes is well worth the effort. Watercolour is the medium I picked up first and it still holds the magic for me today.

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About Leisure Painter

Welcome to a new year of painting with Leisure Painter. We begin this month's tutorials with David Webb's new year-long series, Watercolour basics and beyond, where he takes you through essential watercolour techniques. This month, David discusses basic equipment and the first of the techniques: the wash. For all those who want a back-to-basics approach to drawing and painting, we have step-by-step demonstrations, illustrated techniques and practical advice in watercolour, acrylics and oils as well as drawing media. For those with more experience, you will find plenty of inspiration and practical instruction for painting portraits, landscapes, animals, still lifes, abstracts, a market scene and more. We're here to help you make the most of your favourite hobby.