Paint Lab – Week 1 – Mark Making

I treated myself to the book Paint Lab, 52 Exercises Inspired by Artists, Materials, Time, Place and Method by Deborah Forman from the RISD Museum store last week.  The book has 52 different painting exercises, so as my New Year’s resolution, I have vowed to do one exercise each week.  The exercises are focused primarily on practicing new methods and techniques, so many of the pieces are fairly abstract in nature.  If you are interested, I highly recommend getting the book.  The first chapter is inspired by the art of Paul Klee and is called “Mark Making”.  In this lesson, we make small marks of water color paint on to add visual texture and depth to a painting.  Without further ado – let’s get started!

Klee, Paul, Parnassum (1938), WebMuseum Paris, (Painting), Retrieved from

Klee, Paul, Parnassum (1938), WebMuseum Paris, (Painting), Retrieved from

I liked this lesson because I typically don’t work with water color paints.  I actually used a set of beginner watercolor tubes that I had purchased for my daughter a while ago.  I was pleasantly surprised by how vibrant the colors were.  I was also pleased with how the marks had a certain level of opacity, but were still transparent enough to let the layers underneath have influence.  Here are my two examples:

Cod - Watercolor on Paper

Rebecca Hamilton Stockdill, Cod – Watercolor on Paper, 2016

"Sunset" - Watercolor on Paper

Rebecca Hamilton Stockdill, Sunset, – Watercolor on Paper, 2016

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