…and so it continues…. World watercolour month (strictly without the U) is well over half way through. I am on holiday and trying to keep going. So on day 16 I did a panicky 5 minute rose after arriving in our cottage:



day 17 was another fox:


day 18 was a sketch of our row of cottages:


day 19 is a few rooks from the extremely noisy rookery across the valley:





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Watercolour conundrum

It may be easy to assume that with practise you will master watercolour. Nah! Think again. Yesterday I could paint and today I couldn’t.


Because it is watercolour’s way of stopping you getting proud – pride really does come before a fall.

Ooh, I thought, I’m on a roll, I’ll just knock out a lovely fox I’ve been meaning to do for ages….

No you won’t, said watercolour. You will paint something that a four year old would be ashamed of…

I apologised to watercolour for taking it for granted and started again. It is not be best, but at least I am not too ashamed to post it here.

The moral of this story is that we are all beginners as far as watercolour is concerned and it likes to make sure we don’t forget it.


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My 15 year old son is desperate for a dog – not any dog, he wants a Corgi. On many, many grounds we are not getting one: university in 3 years’ time – who would be looking after it? It would chase my chickens. I’m a republican, so the last breed I would consider is a Corgi – etc, etc.

Anyway, he is worried about his exam results which he gets today, so in a ‘good-mummy-moment’ I have painted him a Corgi for his bedroom. This is rather a bright one because 1) he is 15 and having your mum paint a pic for you is probably not cool and 2) I had all the paint left in my palette from painting pheasants and I don’t like to waste.

I have used it as my day 14 post for #worldwatercolormonth. I should have been painting a fox, which is on my commission list, but decided my son is way more important. Hope he likes it!


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I have been wanting to paint a pair of fighting pheasants on canvas for a while, but it will be quite a challenge and I keep putting it off. So, today I bit the bullet (slightly).

Having been doing lots of pen and wash over the last couple of days, I decided to have a go – I started gently with a single happy bird, progressed to a ruffled chap and then did a pair. I am happy with the dynamic and now have to work out how to retain the simplicity and spontaneity in watercolour on its own, rather than using the pen as a crutch… At least I had plenty for #worldwatercolormonth day 13!







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Pen and wash

I love using pen and watercolour together – either under-drawing to then add the washes, or over-drawing to help redefine if it has gone a bit too loose. I ran a workshop this weekend with a lovely group and did these as demonstrations of both approaches. Luckily that also gave me day 9 and 10 of #worldwatercolormonth.




Here’s a bonus day 11 – another rescue piece – using the pen to add a bit of oomph:


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Fancy learning watercolours?

If you are following this blog from far away, sorry in advance as this is very local to me here in my bit of the UK.

I plan to start a regular watercolour class on a Thursday afternoon.  I have run workshops with art groups across Berks, Oxon and Bucks and teach regularly at JoeDaisy studios in Maple Durham. The group will be held in the Shiplake Church Rooms (opposite The Plowden Arms pub), Thursday from 1.30  – 4.30. If you don’t know the hall, it is on the main Henley/Reading road with a good car park, so has easy access from Henley, Twyford, Sonning, Reading etc.

Having a weekly class will be fantastic for building up skills, exploring new techniques, developing topics – as well as having a relaxed and sociable time. It will operate during term time (ie with a break for half term and school holidays). Each session will have a theme, which will be scheduled in advance to give people time to think about it and gather any reference material they might need. I plan to start the session with a half-hour or so demonstration, tips, and discussion of things to consider and then leave you plenty of time to work on a painting (with support and suggestions). At the end there will be time to look at each other’s work and see what went well, before the grand tidy up. Of course there will be a break for tea and coffee! Everyone can work at their own pace, so each session will be suitable for beginners and those with plenty of experience.

I understand that you might not want to commit for a full term, so I am asking people to commit to a month in advance. Each session will be £12 if paid in advance, or £14 if on an adhoc basis (subject to spaces being available – priority is to those who book ahead). I need a minimum of 10 people to ensure the class is sustainable, however the hall is spacious so we can accommodate more. Should I be inundated, then it will be first come first served and I will set up a waiting list.

The dates are (break for half term and for the new vicar to be inducted):

September (£48): 1 Sept, 8 Sept, 22 Sept, 29 Sept

October (£36): 6 Oct, 13 Oct, 20 Oct

November (£48)r: 3 Nov, 10 Nov, 17 Nov, 24 Nov

December (£36): 1 Dec, 8 Dec, 15 Dec

Please email me by 10 August at the latest to confirm your place (I need name, email and contact details please). I will then send out the schedule for the term and confirm all details. If you have any questions, drop me an email (liz@chaplease caderton.com). Please also feel free to send this on to any friends who may be interested.

I do hope you can join us – it should be a lot of fun!


Best wishes



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World watercolor month continues!

Good grief, you would think doing a little painting each day wouldn’t be tricky, but we are on 7 July and already I’ve missed a day. Good excuse as I was hosting a fundraising event for Macmillan cancer care yesterday, so too busy to paint.

I am on an owl theme at the moment, as I find them quick and fun to paint. Day 5 was a barn owl and today Day 7 is a tawny. I am tempted to cheet and post pictures of old paintings, but how sad would that be? Who would I be cheating – just me?




Do take a look at the facebook page, for all sorts of wonderful artwork: https://www.facebook.com/groups/worldwatercolor/

Any suggestions for day 8?

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