Seascape Sketch

For today’s painting, I had planned on following a tutorial and doing a larger seascape, but ran outta time (as frequently happens). So I grabbed a library book from my shelf and skimmed through it for ideas. “Work Small, Learn Big: Sketching with Pen & Watercolor”, edited by Jennifer King was recommended by Jesse VanWagner, and I wanna thank you, Jesse, because this is a terrific book!

0712 1

I spotted this little painting on page 16 (no colors or explanation attached), and it caught my eye, so I set to work. I think the key for me with watercolor, as with so many artistic pursuits, is speed. Work fast. Don’t dawdle; don’t fuss. Get the ink in quick, lay the color down, and then work to the next area, and hopefully if I move fast enough, the colors blend as I go, without too many hard edges.   This one is about 5 x 5 1/2″:

 0712 2

I am pleased with the way this one turned out, considering it only took about 1/2 hour, including sketching time with a (03 nib) Micron pen (and that’s about all the time I could spare).   I like the sky, and I was happy with how the colors (burnt sienna, raw sienna, raw umber, cerulean, ultramarine, rose madder, bit of winsor orange to gray the blue) played together. I need to compose paintings of my own, but this was a good exercise. By studying (and copying) the work of experienced artists, hopefully I’m learning to do just that.   Painting every day is paying off for me.  I’m feeling more confident and looking forward to what comes next!

Happy July Sunday! Take some time to rest and rejuvenate today. Give yourself some blissful peace!

64 thoughts on “Seascape Sketch

      1. I wish I could watch you paint. I still don’t get how to move color from light to dark. When I add in a darker value, it all just gets muddy. I should watch one of those online tutorials.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. The tutorials definitely help me, and practice. If you mix a color with its complement, it can get muddy (green and red, purple yellow, orange and blue), but unless you’re doing that or mixing red, blue and yellow together (which is pretty much the same as mixing a color with it’s complement), you usually won’t get mud. Not sure if this helps?

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  1. HOLY SEASCAPE BATMAN!!! Wowsers! Blown away, Laura! This is amazing! I am so intimidated by whole scenes still…. One object at a time is doable for me. You are making me want to venture though…. we’ll see 🙂 Awesome job – and in a 1/2 hour from drawing to finish to produce this work of art – AWESOME!

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    1. Thanks Jodi, but it is very rough and when copying another painting – much easier! The trouble with photos is what to leave out. And composition is hard and time-consuming. Much easier to take a little sketch from a book and copy it. You could totally do this. But thanks for your warm words (as always)! 💜

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      1. True – you talk so artsy techy! 🙂 LOL! I need to take it more seriously. I truly am so naive about composition and all that. Keep on keepin’ on, and I will continue learning (or trying to absorb some of it) from you! 🙂

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        1. Lol I’ve been immersed in art for nearly a year! I started in August knowing absolutely zilch. I’ve never been this passionate about anything since college. I watch tutorials while doing anything else I can multitask in with it. It’s pretty much constant. Still haven’t figured out why, and don’t wanna take the time to figure it out! But it turns out that copying that sketch last night really helped, because now I’m browsing photos trying to come up with my own composition. We’ll see what happens! I think the ink really helps. It gives definition, direction, it’s easy to see when painting over it (unlike pencil, which often gets lost). Not sure if you might wanna try a line and wash tutorial – Joanne Boon Thomas has one on youtube. Actually, you’re doing great, you should just keep doing what you’re doing!! :))) 💜💛💜


  2. And this Laura is what I’m talking about! Congratulations on your beautiful seascape/beach scene – a wonderful use of color and values. Great variation in the sand colors, and wonderful sky leading down to the beautiful water. Yes you did it and on the first shot!

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    1. Awww Mary you make me fee like a million bucks every time! I really appreciate that! I shamelessly copied that other artist’s sketch, though. I did try and match the colors he used, and changed the sky a bit, but basically I used his composition and tried to copy his line work also. I’m working on coming up with something that I could call my own, based on what I learned from this exercise. I truly appreciate your heartfelt praise. And your work is incredible, so……even moreso. Thanks again, Mary!

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      1. We learn through others work and this example of your painting was awesome. Meant to mention before that I really like the light mood of the scene as well. I’m looking forward to seeing more seascape paintings.

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  3. This is really lovely.

    I don’t think I’ve ever finished a watercolour sketch in half an hour. Maybe I should try to work a bit faster like you say. I’m really amazed that you could produce something so beautiful in such a short amount of time.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It’s beautiful! I love the color palette,and the lighthouse. Your sky is pretty neat. I’m having issues with my skies. I need to try painting them more often. I had a sketching and drawing teacher years ago who told the class to sketch just 5 minutes everyday. I did for quite awhile, but haven’t in years.

    Did you put this one in a frame to see how it looks? I bet it looks fantastic!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. BeaUtiFUL Laura!!! I like the addition of the lighthouse in your seascape! I think when I copy someone else’s idea I learn to see it in their eyes. This broadens my perspective on a subject which I believe is a good thing! So keep up the AWESOME paintings!!! 🎨❤️😊

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  6. Hey Laura – love your process. Your daily painting is building your skills and your confidence – and best of all – it adds to your joy. You are on a great track. – Tom

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I loved your painting today. It was so peaceful and quiet. Life has been quite stressful this week and your artwork was just what I needed. Perhaps a margarita would help too. Ha ha. Indeed I’m heading the the beach next Saturday to spend some much needed time with my parents. Thank you and God Bless!

    Sent from my iPhone


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  8. Wow, this is just spectacular! So very impressed that you created it in 30 minutes. Again, I really admire your drive to take 30 minutes everyday to create a new piece. Your drive is such an encouragement to me. I don’t always have 30 minutes each day, but try to take the time to add a few more lines to a flower drawing. Thank you for your dedication! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your comment BB, and I’m glad I can inspire you with my crazy art obsession! I’m getting hooked on settling down with my paintbrushes after work and while dinner is heating up. Now if I could just compose my own paintings, paint water, waves, reflections, so many new challenges in this arena, but I’m very excited about it!! 💜

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Copying other works of art is still a really great step. You learn so much from looking and observing while creating. When you are ready, the challenge will be waiting for you. But I encourage you to start small, so you don’t get overwhelmed. Just like the pictures are speaking to your soul, pick the place or a picture you took to create your painting. 🙂 Don’t worry if it takes time to be ready.

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  9. Awesome!!!
    I’m glad you got a chance to check it out, it’s such an amazing book. Sweet find that you had it at you’re library.

    I’m really enjoying your watercolors and especially your lighthouse theme you got going. Keep up the great work!

    Liked by 1 person

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