Acrylic on Gessoed Watercolor Paper

acrylic on gessoed water color paper, about 5x7

acrylic on gessoed water color paper, about 5x7

Watercolor paper makes a great surface for acrylics. If you are like me and prefer to have a barrier between the paper and the paint that prevents it from being absorbed, you can put down a coat of tinted gesso first. Here is what I did in the example above:

  • coat the paper with a thin layer of tinted gesso, in this case I used a bit of cobalt blue, yellow oxide and dioxazine purple to create a purplish-grey similar to that in the clouds
  • the gesso goes on the entire area to be painted, I tape off the edges to create a nice even border
  • next I painted the darkest areas as I would if I were working on canvas, in this case that meant the land mass at the bottom
  • with the cobalt and some white to lighten it, I did the blue areas of sky next
  • I mixed a bit of cadmium red and cadmium yellow to create a salmon orange, also put a bit of white in this mixture to lighten and grey it down, this was scumbled over the areas of the clouds to create a pinkish-orange glow
  • last of all I mixed a bit of the cadmium yellow into some titanium white for the areas of the clouds in full sun
  • to finish, I worked a tiny bit of salmon pastel on the areas of the clouds where I really wanted to emphasize the orange glow, as well as a bit of a creamy white in the sun lit areas (the gessoed surface takes the pastel beautifully, no need to spray with fixative there is very little pastel on the surface)
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