"Venetian Door Study"
Original Watercolour by Jean Haines
There is a saying that when one door closes another one opens. In my life another three seem to open and all at exactly the same time! I have so many requests and decisions to make that my priority is time to paint first daily and everything else falls after that.
Recently I was asked to make a DVD which will be out this autumn. In it are several demonstrations on techniques covered in my book " How to Paint Colour and Light in Watercolour". One is a very old tip for painting straight lines. Because I never use a preliminary sketch I don't have the necessary guidelines to lead my brush when working on architecture. Many of my landscapes and buildings include very old buildings where outer edges would hardly be seen as perfectly straight. In fact the odd uneven line often adds charm and an appearance of age. But there are times when I do want a straight line and I know some artists coming to my workshops do too as they may prefer a more exact painting with precise detail in sections.
So how do you get the perfect straight line in a watercolour without using a ruler?
Lay a piece of card with a straight edge on your paper and paint along the edge. Then very quickly work away from it with the same colour. Lift the card very carefully which I have demonstrated on my DVD and there you go. A straight line!
It's easy when you know how.
By the way I rarely work with straight lines, I prefer the ones with character!