Monday, 26 March 2012

Watercolor Washes

File:Brush and watercolours.jpg
Wikimedia Commons
How Do I Prepare Watercolor Paper For Washes


Preparing a watercolor wash to paper is relatively easy.  What you will need to do is to prepare your watercolor paper first before you use a watercolor wash.  This avoids the problem of the paper warping or waving after you have applied watercolor to the paper.  First step, put the watercolor paper in some water, leave it for a while to soak into the paper thoroughly, then stretch the paper on a board by flattening it carefully on a board or hard surface and put gummed tape around the paper.  Leave it to dry naturally, not in direct heat, and then you are ready to apply watercolor washes before you prepare your calligraphy work.  Remember though, the paper needs to be smooth and not textured for your calligraphy to look good and to avoid the calligraphy nib from snagging on the textured watercolor paper.  However, if desired, you can make some good textured effects with broad letterings by using a broad felt-tipped shaped calligraphy pen of any color.  You can find these in any art shop.

How Do I Apply Colored Washes To Watercolor Paper

Once the watercolor paper is thoroughly dry, you are ready to apply watercolor washes to it.  Mix a tiny blob of watercolor of your choice in a small glass jar.  You can even mix different watercolors together until you find the desired shade.  Mix the blobs of watercolor paint in the old mug or jug and mix some water with it to make a thin color.  Mix thoroughly until the paint is dissolved completely.  The best color should be a tint and not a heavy color; otherwise, your calligraphy work will not stand out very much.  Test the watercolor mix on some test paper to see if you are happy with the color before applying it to the watercolor paper.  Remember to keep the color mixture thin; with plenty of water applied to the mixture, otherwise the color will appear to be too strong or deep.

Applying The Watercolor Tint

Tilt the board with the stretched watercolor paper at a slight angle and apply the wash with a broad watercolor brush and overlap the strokes to make a nice even color with no streaks.  Continue to apply the wet brush to the paper, working horizontally until you work to the bottom of the paper.  Do not go over a streak again, just leave it to blend into the previous layers and keep working swiftly while the paint is wet on the paper.  The paper should look even and smooth.  Leave it to dry thoroughly and then the paper is ready for you to write calligraphy on it.

You can use any color of calligraphy ink as desired.  You can design a picture or any image of your choice in thin washes to enhance your calligraphy illustration.