Members Project 34

French Chateau
Step 1

This watercolour was done on location in France last month.  Don’t worry its not as complex as it looks.

The usual outline drawing making sure the chimneys on the Chateau are nice and tall. For the sky wash I used my 1./5″ flat wash brush and pre wet the whole area with a little bit of yellow ochre well watered into the bottom part of the sky then for the main part of the sky cobalt blue and put this on very quickly stroking from side to side, wash out the brush and add a tiny touch of light red to the cobalt blue to paint in the base of the clouds.  Again wash out the brush quickly and soften this colour into the clouds.  All done with my bucket filled out of the canal. But if you haven’t got a canal the tap will do.
Step 2

Once well and truly dried I changed to my No 8 round brush for the whole of the Chateau. Starting off with the Charles Evans Sand onto the pre wet Chateau. Whilst the sand is still running drop in a little bit of yellow ochre here and there, just let it spread and the same with raw umber. Notice I have left white areas next to the windows for the shutters.  Let this dry whilst painting the roof.

With the same brush I used burnt sienna for the darker side of the roof and light red for the lighter side. For the chimneys add a tiny touch of raw umber to the burnt sienna for that red brick colour. Then suck out a little bit of paint for the lighter side of the chimney.

Step 3

For the windows cobalt blue mixed with burnt sienna again my no 8 round brush and these are a couple of blobs of colour leaving white between each blob to represent window panes. Now its to the shadow which makes all the difference. Cobalt blue alizarin crimson and burnt sienna mixed.

Its fairly obvious where I have put all this shadow inside each windows and a bit of shadow underneath and to the left of each shutter. Notice the shadow cast by the chimneys going diagonally up and a nice broad line where the roof meets the building. Then when you have finished with all this shadow put more water into the mix and put a few daubs around the corner on the left hand side of the building.

There you go, any fiddling in this painting is now done.

For the little trees to the right of the building and a little bit of yellow ochre first to the right, then hookers green and yellow ochre mixed and finally a bit of cobalt blue to the base of them.

Step 4
For this next lot of trees to the right of the building its the same colour mixes as in the first lot and the same brush, but notice to the right they are much weaker, simply stick more water into the mix. Then once they had all dried, I then painted the more prominent tree in but using burnt sienna instead of yellow ochre to mix with the green.

The big tree to the left of the building I firstly used my no 3 rigger brush and a mix of raw umber with a touch of cobalt blue to paint a few boughs then went to my 3/4″ flat brush and stippled on a little bit of yellow ochre followed by hookers green and light red and finally  a bit of cobalt blue to the base and to the right hand side of the foliage. Looks how many different greens we have got going on already. All just using hookers green.

Step 5

For the little patch coming down in the middle distance I again just used Charles Evans Sand. Just fill it in no detail needed. Likewise either side of the path and underneath the Chateau which were hookers green and yellow ochre mixed. Very simply filling in strokes using my 3/4″ flat brush. Followed by a little bit of cobalt blue here and there for a touch more depth.

For the bridge I used Charles Evans Sand followed by Raw Umber and then a touch of the shadow mix as before underneath the bridge and casting down onto the wall.

For reflections I used my 3/4″ flat brush for all of it. Don’t think about being to precise with reflecting shapes, just get a rough approximation of colour. So the greens you used for the trees just drag downwards with dry brush strokes and for the Chateau I just used sand, and a few stroke of cobalt blue mixed with raw umber for the windows

Now let it all dry totally.

Step 6

Now big broad strokes with my 3/4″ flat brush don’t hang about here because you will disturb everything that you put on. Pre wet the water area then drop on a touch of yellow ochre followed by cobalt blue mixed with light red.

Let it all dry, don’t be tempted to fiddle.

Once it had dried I switched to my No 8 round brush and filled in the boat with a little bit of yellow ochre and raw umber mixed to one side, to the left hand side. Then add a touch of cobalt blue to the same mix for the right hand side, don’t forget to reflect these colours below.

For the people to be honest you can use any colours you want. Just have them fairly bright, the red I used for these was alizarin crimson.


Step 7

For finishing off strokes on this its the big tree on the right hand side with a little bit of bank. Again using my 3/4″ flat brush for all of this and it was burnt sienna mixed with hookers green for the tree and yellow ochre mixed with hookers green for the grass. All of these brush strokes you have used previously. Finally just to finish off you will notice I have edged the banks where the banks meet the water with cobalt blue mixed with light red.

Hey presto you’ve now been to France with me.