Starting from the beginning – Wet-on-Watercolour 1, Yellow & Blue

This year I have started from the beginning with Wet-on-wet watercolour painting with Anusha. I have always loved wet-on-wet watercolour painting but at times have been unsure how to approach it from the earliest stages of working with primary colours. Originally starting with Elki and now with Anusha, I have approached wet-on-wet watercolour in different ways, sometimes with no direction at all, sometimes with a small amount of direction, and sometimes using stories, poems, other lessons, and imagery, to accompany the lessons.

Over the years I have purchased a couple of books to help with lessons, Painting with Children by Brunhild Muller, which I found helpful as a book to start with when first embarking on  wet-on-wet painting, and Painting in Waldorf Education by Dick Bruin and Attie Lichthart, which I have found to be a beautiful resource but not as practically helpful as what I would like. But recently I bought a book which I am absolutely loving and finding extremely informative and practical, Painting and Drawing in Waldorf Schools by Thomas Wildgruber. This book goes through the painting and drawing lessons from classes 1 – 8, including other chapters, such as, form drawing and teacher preparation.

I have now started using this book with Anusha, starting at the beginning with class 1. I hope to spend sometime each week throughout the year slowly working through the class 1 lessons.

We began with Yellow. Using a strong citrus yellow, brightening the bottom of the page, and lightening to white at the top of the page.

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Next creating star or sun shapes with citrus yellow, and then adding warmth to their centres with golden yellow.

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I then introduced Blue. Using prussian blue, starting with white at the top of the page, and deepening down to the bottom of the page.

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A free painting by Anusha with blue that we thought looked a lot like a wave.

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We then introduced blue and yellow to each other, firstly the yellow did not want to get too close to blue,

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but then they greeted each other and green started to form. These paintings used the citrus yellow and prussian blue as well. Some golden yellow was added to the citurs yellow at the end to add warmth to the page.

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The next lesson was similar but with yellow shapes dancing across the page and blue surrounding them. Again the blue did not get too close to the yellow,

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but then the yellow was more comfortable with blue and they got to know each other better.

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This was followed by the making of green. Starting with prussian blue at the bottom of the page, we painted up just past half way, then with citrus yellow at the top of the page, we painted down just past half way so the colours could meet and make green together.

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After the ‘formal’ part of our last lesson Anusha created two beautiful paintings on Fabriano watercolour paper that I bought just for ‘special’ paintings. She wanted to paint some pictures of shells, these were done on dry paper.

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And that is where we are up to so far. Soon we will be meeting red!

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