Simplify… sort of.

Wasaga Beach loose Hahnemuhle 150 dpi

Wasaga Beach simplified Hahnemuhle 150 dpi

Both of these are from one of my black and white fine prints of Wasaga Beach. Wasaga is the longest fresh water beach in the world and it’s one of my favorite places to photograph and just be when it’s off season. It’s a major tourist hub in summer.

In the first watercolour sketch I was trying to simplify by just laying down colour with one stroke to “keep it fresh”, as the sketching gurus say. Good thing I lived to paint another day.

In the second sketch I attempted to simplify by removing elements from the painting that contributed  strongly to the photograph, such as the large piece of driftwood at the water’s edge and all the clumps of grasses. I decided to bring it down to three horizontal bands- the sky, the waves and the beach. Nothing else.

I was also working on learning a skill. I want to learn to paint waves and as you can see I had no success in either of these. However between painting each of these I tried again on a 5×7 piece of 100% cotton Strathmore watercolour paper. I feel I came closer to actually making waves in this one, and true 100% cotton paper is easier to work on anyway. Because I had such poor separation of tones and over painted  the beach terribly, I inked in the driftwood and a bit on the grasses, adding some rocks. We’ll ignore that mess.

Wasaga Beach 100% wc paper Hahnemuhle 150 dpi 1