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Beautiful bugs

Part 1 Take your first steps in painting with line and wash, from the materials you’ll need to drawing and painting techniques to try, with Liz Chaderton

Line & wash

Rhino Beetle , line & wash on NOT watercolour paper, 101⁄2x141⁄2in. (27x37cm) t

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

Understand your materials

Drawing techniques to try

How to create interest and texture in your work

Painting insects – are you serious? might be your first reaction to this article, but with over 900,000 different kinds of known insects there will be something to inspire every artist: perhaps a scarlet ladybird, the powdery wings of a butterfly, the jewelled body of a beetle or the stripes and velvet of a bumblebee?

But how can you capture their rapid movements or their unique mix of transparent wings and hard skeleton? This is where line and wash comes into its own. The mix of hard-edged ink with the softness of free-flowing colour is a wonderful way of capturing a little of nature’s bounty. However, even if insects are not your favourite technique, pen and wash is equally applicable to capturing urban landscapes or portraits so do read on.

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About Leisure Painter

Welcome to the March issue of Leisure Painter. Winter is such a good season to practise and experiment with techniques and media that can be used to good effect when you are painting on the move this summer. Within this month's pages you will find a plethora of practical advice, demonstrations and tutorials to help you develop your skills and confidence in graphite and coloured pencils, watercolour, acrylics, oil, pastels and more. Whether you want to learn drawing skills for line and wash, paint animals in oils or seasonal landscapes in watercolour, there's something here for you. Further your skills as you learn the value of acrylic highlights on less-than-perfect watercolours, how to produce abstracts with collage and colour fields, and paint watercolour flowers with botanical accuracy. Enjoy your month of painting with Leisure Painter.
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