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Thursday, 3 July 2008

Gouache resist technique

Today I had a go at this technique which is part of a challenge within one of my art groups. There is a tutorial on Agnes the Reds' website.

The materials list onthe tutorial begins "Watercolour paper - 300lb pre stretched/cold pressed is best" mmm. Lost already. I also needed India Ink which I didn't have. So let's improvise.

The first thing that has to be done is some kind of image. As I am not really an 'artist' this kind of thing fills me with horror as it requires drawing. Looking at the pieces that had been completed already, it seemed to me that a very simple image would work best - I copied an image from a small stamp of a very basic little bird and started from there. I used some watercolour paper - no idea if it was hot or cold or what lol. So far so good.

Now we had to paint in the bits that we wanted to resist the ink (to be applied later) with gouache. I don't really understand this medium altho I do have it, and I'm not sure I am using it properly. Found this part quite difficult to do and retain even the few details I had. In the end basically just splodged it all over and then scraped it off with a cocktail stick in the appropriate places.

Then came adding the ink. Well the only inks I had were coloured ones designed to be used with a graphics pen that I don't have (were a bargain) so I chose what seemed to be darkest neutral one I had. I tested a bit to make sure it was waterproof, seemed OK so added it all over. Seemed a bit pale (well it would, it wasn't black) so did it again. Here is the result. I actually quite like it like this.

Now comes the really scarey part, you have to wash off the gouache to reveal the clear paper beneath. Putting anything basically made of paper intentionally near water seems rather risky at the best of times but I swallowed hard and did it. Amazingly the gouache came off quite easily and apart from looking a little soggy around the edges it was basically fine.

When it was dry I coloured it in with some watercolour paints.

I can't say I am over enamoured of this as a finished piece, but it was always more about seeing if I could do it than creating a masterpiece. (Sorry, had to stop myself laughing). But it is certainly acceptable although it would have been better with a black contrast. Perhaps I will try again using a permanent maker pen as I don't have any black ink. Question is, can I now finish the challenge by making an ATC? I don't think this is a technique I am going to be using much - I don't draw - but may have another go at the weekend.


PBird said...

Mmm that is sooo weird I tried something along these lines, not the same but with gesso as the resist but not to wash off. I must try this too and see whats best. Not that i've mastered the first one yet! You always have a go at all the techniques im very impressed and I like the wee fella hes cute x

Sherry said...

I had reservations when I tried this technique too - but hey, it works as your little birdie shows! Great stuff.

Sian said...

I think it looks great. I haven't tried this yet as I can't find any gouache! (I used to have some as I used it lots when I was at school, but it's in the loft somewhere and has probably dried up by now anyway). I was trying to resist a trip to the art shop as I know I'll buy other stuff too.

Agnes the Red said...

Great attempt Cindy...was very interested to see how another coloured ink would work out - love the image...he's a cutie pie!

Thanks for taking part...and by the way you don't HAVE to make an ATC - it's just a voluntary challenge aside to the project...but it would be nice to see another piece from you :-)
Ange xxx

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