Rose blossom

Backlit Rose.  Watercolor with acrylic background by Rachel Murphree

Backlit rose blossom. Available. Click on image to view larger.

This painting was from a class taught by Penny Simpson from Las Cruces, NM.  She provided us a lovely photograph and a drawing to transfer to our paper.  It’s about 6.5″ x 12″ and is on a heavier watercolor paper (300 lb).

The process is to paint the black background first with acrylic paint which gives a crisp edge to the focal point and then paint the central design.  I used mostly wet in wet techniques with pale washes.  I got the first layer down and realized the underside of the petal on the right (with the various colors) was deeper than the others.  so I carefully re-wet those lighter petals and added deeper washes on them to balance it out.

It is difficult to get that kind of stark dark coverage with watercolor alone, but I have read there are other ways (here’s one from a Daniel Smith email ) so I’d like to experiment more with both. Nanci from our class brought in black gesso which also worked really well.

Penny was the one I wrote to around the holidays asking if she taught private lessons, and she doesn’t but directed me to the local group run by Jacques Barriac.  Being with them has opened up lots of other doors and I’ve found lovely people to paint with.  It’s been a great experience.

Penny will be with us for three more weeks, and tomorrow’s painting will be a pair of wine bottles.  Please be sure to check out her link; you will love her work!

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