Saturday, 4 June 2011

Why use gouache?


I recently bought a painting by Archie Sutter-Watt. I've loved his work for such a long time and its a great privilege to have it hanging on the wall, to be able to look at it whenever I want, to see his brushwork and his added pencil lines to show form.

                                                     You can view more of his works at

I've long had the notion to paint with gouache for several reasons. Its easier to take it outside to use than oils - less messy to clean up - no thinners etc just water - no awkward canvas or painting boards to carry
 about - and cheaper framing !!
I also like the effect that you can produce with gouache and that it can be painted over to rectify mistakes - or so I thought.

But its not that simple. The problem I'm finding is that when you put paint on top of paint it seems to rewet the underlying layer and the whole thing gets muddy and dull as the colours then mix together. 
So its a time to practice and read "How tos" especially blogs such as Martin's, a fellow Sketcherciser.

But no matter what I read or am told the only way to learn is to get out the paper and paints and do it! So put the gouache kit into the car, and as the sun is shining, off to Culzean Castle grounds to follow my own advice and "keep practising" 

1 comment:

  1. Bridget - It's a while since I painted with gouache but I don't remember the lifting being such a problem. Might I suggest you Google TerraSkin paper. It is a paper made of ground rock - I kid you not! It also has a lot of pluses environmentally apparently. It is the most beautiful velvety surface you will ever find for gouache. The water doesn't float on top so I think that's why the pigment doesn't move around so much. It's flexible and easy to carry like paper and frames as paper would. You should be able to find it in the UK.

    Enjoying your castle outing. I look forward to the results.


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