Watercolour of Ardglass
BRUSHES I now use brushes from Rosemary & Co. I use a 1½” goat hair flat series 888 for big washes, a size 14 and 4 series 402 round for general use, and a ¼” swordliner series 770 for branches and squiggles. Rosemary & Co also do wonderful Kolinsky sable brushes and if you are on a budget it is hard to beat Chinese brushes. Brush selection is very personal. Regular visitors will notice I have changed my selection over the years, but the constant factor is that all brushes release the paint gently and evenly. Avoid bristle brushes. They are designed for oils and are much too harsh for watercolour. Don’t use them for lifting out - with my ancient size 8 worn sable I can lift out the finest line. Synthetic brushes are getting better all the time so don’t discount them and ignore the often repeated idea that a sable brush will last a lifetime. It won’t. The point will wear away within a few months of regular use.
PAINT I recommend artist’s quality tubes from the major manufacturers They stay moist for longer, have more pigment and often seem more transparent. Like most people, I love a bargain but please avoid the really cheap sets of paint that cost the same as a tube of decent stuff - they are horrible and completely useless even for practice. Colours are very personal - use what you like - but in case you are interested I use: BLUES: Ultramarine (warm), Phthalo Blue GS (cool) Cobalt Blue (neutral) REDS: Cadmium or Pyrrol (Winsor) Red (warm) Quinacridone Magenta (cool) YELLOWS: Cadmium Yellow (warm) Aureolin (cool) SPECIALS: Quinacridone Gold - A lovely warm yellow/gold. Burnt Sienna - A dull orange that is a great mixer, dulling too bright greens reds and blues. White Gouache - perfect for highlights but use in moderation.
PAPER Use only reputable makes and find one or two that you like and stick to them. Different weights and surfaces of the same paper can behave in very different ways. I use Bockingford 200lb NOT (cold pressed), Saunders 200lb NOT and rough, Millford 140lb NOT, and Bockingford 140lb HP for pen and wash, all made by St. Cuthbert’s Mill.  With heavier paper I just tape it to a lightweight plastic board and I make my own blocks with lighter paper. Blocks are handy because they do not need a board and although the paper will cockle when wet, it will dry flat as long as you do not remove it from the block until it is completely dry. Hot pressed paper is not recommended for beginners as the paint tends to stay on the surface, making it very difficult to paint a smooth wash.
GRAHAME BOOTH 2019 | PRIVACY POLICY
Some specialised art bags can be very expensive. I use a camera bag from Amazon which works great. I can fit everything I need into this bag, including a compact easel, pens, pencils, brushes, paints, water carrier, quarter sheet paper and even a tiny PA system that I use when demonstrating. It is easy to carry and it is small enough to take on board an aircraft.
BRUSHES I now use brushes from Rosemary & Co. I use a 1½” goat hair flat series 888 for big washes, a size 14 and 4 series 402 round for general use, and a ¼” swordliner series 770 for branches and squiggles. Rosemary & Co also do wonderful Kolinsky sable brushes and if you are on a budget it is hard to beat Chinese brushes. Brush selection is very personal. Regular visitors will notice I have changed my selection over the years, but the constant factor is that all brushes release the paint gently and evenly. Avoid bristle brushes. They are designed for oils and are much too harsh for watercolour. Don’t use them for lifting out - with my ancient size 8 worn sable I can lift out the finest line. Synthetic brushes are getting better all the time so don’t discount them and ignore the often repeated idea that a sable brush will last a lifetime. It won’t. The point will wear away within a few months of regular use.
PAINT I recommend artist’s quality tubes from the major manufacturers They stay moist for longer, have more pigment and often seem more transparent. Like most people, I love a bargain but please avoid the really cheap sets of paint that cost the same as a tube of decent stuff - they are horrible and completely useless even for practice. Colours are very personal - use what you like - but in case you are interested I use: BLUES: Ultramarine (warm), Phthalo Blue GS (cool) Cobalt Blue (neutral) REDS: Cadmium or Pyrrol (Winsor) Red (warm) Quinacridone Magenta (cool) YELLOWS: Cadmium Yellow (warm) Aureolin (cool) SPECIALS: Quinacridone Gold - A lovely warm yellow/gold. Burnt Sienna - A dull orange that is a great mixer, dulling too bright greens reds and blues. White Gouache - perfect for highlights but use in moderation.
PAPER Use only reputable makes and find one or two that you like and stick to them. Different weights and surfaces of the same paper can behave in very different ways. I use Bockingford 200lb NOT (cold pressed), Saunders 200lb NOT and rough, Millford 140lb NOT, and Bockingford 140lb HP for pen and wash, all made by St. Cuthbert’s Mill.  With heavier paper I just tape it to a lightweight plastic board and I make my own blocks with lighter paper. Blocks are handy because they do not need a board and although the paper will cockle when wet, it will dry flat as long as you do not remove it from the block until it is completely dry. Hot pressed paper is not recommended for beginners as the paint tends to stay on the surface, making it very difficult to paint a smooth wash.
Edgar Degas Painting is very easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do
GRAHAME BOOTH 2018 | PRIVACY POLICY
Some specialised art bags can be very expensive. I use a camera bag from Amazon which works great. I can fit everything I need into this bag, including a compact easel, pens, pencils, brushes, paints, water carrier, quarter sheet paper and even a tiny PA system that I use when demonstrating. It is easy to carry and it is small enough to take on board an aircraft.
Watercolour of Ardglass
W A T E R C O L O U R
W A T E R C O L O U R