Rethinking your supplies

If you have noticed through this blog, watercolour is one of the most go-to medium I use, because it’s quick to set up and easy to clean up. All I need to do it to open the lid to my pan watercolours, uncap my water brush and voila, I can do whatever I want. And to clean up, I just need to scribble off the paint on my waterbrush somewhere and then leave the watercolour pans to dry.

I own a basic set of Reeves’ watercolour, with just 12 colours. Which doesn’t really matter to me because I can mix my own colours, and I’m getting better at mixing the colours I want. (It’s also a good way to force myself to learn colour mixing through trial and error and practicing.) But recently, I’ve been getting into a dilemma, for while I can mix almost any colours under the sun with my watercolours, I am unable mix every shade under the sun. I find that with my set of watercolours, I am unable to mix bright colours, something that I am rather attracted to right now from other artists such as Amy Tangerine and Wilna Furstenberg. I really tried, but I can’t seem to mix the bright colours that would resonate with my heart. Both of them uses pan watercolour too, and judging from the pictures I see of their watercolour, their pans originally comes in those bright colours. And so, these couple of days I have been contemplating getting a set of watercolour that has these bright colours and wondering where best to get them.

But earlier today, I had a serendipitous moment. I pulled out my incomplete scrapbook page from last week (I often leave them half complete when I feel like things are not going smoothly or when I get tired), and was intending to work on the title. It’s the last element to be added to my page, and I was contemplating between hand stitching or watercolour scripting but decided on watercolour in the end because as I said above, it’s a lot easier and more convenient. It’s a nice pastel paper from one of Dear Lizzy’s old collection, and I wanted a colour that would match it.

And so I set about mixing a teal green like colour between my blues and greens, but again, couldn’t get the right shade I want. Feeling frustrated and puzzled, I thought to myself why it is so difficult to mix a teal with my watercolours when I don’t have that much of a problem with my inktense blocks? And *ding* there comes my serendipitous moment – I can mix bright colours with my inktense!! It’s so simple I’m hitting my head as to why I didn’t think of it earlier. And so, I took out my inktense block and started mixing, and the title was done just a little while after it.

So learn from my mistake! The point here is, I guess, to have a better grasp of your supply, and that’s it’s always ok to mix supplies around. In this case, watercolours and inktense are both wet media that can work together or in place of each other. And thus lesson learnt now! That there are other medias that I already own that allows me to mix my bright colours. And also feeling happy now that I can do that. ^^

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