Sunday, January 20, 2013

Four treatments - trying different materials

My most frequent medium is watercolor, but I sometimes worry that it doesn't have enough impact. I just tried painting the same image in four different ways to see which I prefer and I'd love to get feedback. Here they are in the order that I did them. For the first one I used water soluble colored pencil on brown kraft paper. I printed out a scanned pencil image and then colored it. I didn't stretch the paper so it got a bit wrinkly when I added water. The lettering is collaged on top.

The next one is gouache with a little colored pencil and marker.
Next I tried the ink and gouache method I've used before (explained here).
Finally I used watercolor.


  1. Wow - Alison, nice work. First - very nice to meet you. My first thought is what you mentioned about consistency in style. Do you think that has more to do with our actual drawing style - not so much the medium? I believe every good artist is always interested in trying new techniques and if we display a confidence in the execution I think it comes across. Much of what is illustrated needs to reflect the author's voice as well which will vary from project to project. Your work above varies in medium but not in style. Each is nicely executed. I think the first focuses more on the words...the figures are more subdued. The gouache w/pencil the figures are more outstanding. Then in the gouache with ink (my personal fav) there is a vibrancy that dances and seems to reflect more personality. The last one, the watercolor, seems a little more ordinary - but still lovely.

  2. wow !! I could just sit here and look at these all day, but alas, I have work to do of my own.

    As a watercolorist who is struggling like you in deciding which medium that I want to stick with .. I can totally appreciate what you've done here.

    I have been inking mine like you have and I love that style. As I said .. this is what I've been doing too. BUT, I just love the gouache by itself. It is so vibrant. but, I love the watercolor. The inked one reminds me a little of the drawings in old classic stories. The gouache and watercolor remind me of what I see in today's picture books. All of these are great. If I had to choose, I don't think that I can. I guess I would have to say that the pencil may be my least favorite only because I love the vibrancy of the colors on the others. HMMM. I have been no help at all. :) I think I am torn between the watercolor and gouache.

  3. Very hard to decide! But trying to look at them all through the eyes of a child and I think a small child might prefer the watercolour.

    The ink and gouache is more interesting and maybe shows more of a distinct 'personality' but remembering how I used to imagine things in pictures and have bad dreams about them, I think, to a littlie, the wall could look a bit like a fire!