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Wednesday, March 7, 2018

February Demonstration Animals in Watercolour




Julia Cassels has a wealth of experience sketching and painting in Africa. She lived in Zambia for more than ten years and on a farm in Kenya for one year.  Her exquisite watercolour paintings owe much to patient observation and sketching the details that might not be evident in a photograph.  

The main subject of her demonstration was a group of flamingos using two photographs of flocks of the birds as her reference. Her preferred supports are stretched 140lb Arches NOT paper purchased on a roll and Saunders Waterford pads for painting trips. Favourite brushes are Kolinsky sable pointed round Nos. 8 and 16 (sold by Luxartis of Blandford in Dorset, a hake, sword and rigger. Using a cheap child’s paintbrush, some splattered masking fluid reserved white paper for splashes of water around the birds’ legs.
While it dried Julia drew and a mother and baby elephant.  The following techniques were used to depict animals on the move:
·        sketch important lines and angles – little hooks” -even if these are disjointed
·        draw the legs less well-defined than the body
·        draw more loosely and do not connect all the lines – leave “optical gaps”
·        use energetic lines and marks
·        “scribble drawing” – tonal sketches using a scribbling stroke with pencil
Returning to her main painting, Julia used five Winsor & Newton artists’ colours including prussian blue, which dries to a muted shade, cadmium red and naples yellow. She worked wet-in-wet creating subtle colours using layers of washes. Her flamingos were peachy pink with dark grey-blue wings and the water was white with shades of  muted blue-green. The total effect was not unlike a group of beautiful ballet dancers.
Members enjoyed the demonstration and were also interested to see her sketchbooks, greetings cards and copy of her book ‘How to Capture Movement in Your Paintings’.   
Julia’s painting holidays in Zambia, Spain and Greece are very popular.
13th – 21st May 2018   Zambia, Luangwa National Park  2  places available
6th – 13th June 2018    Wild Spain, Aragon & Valencia   . 2  places available
2019    Greece, Island of Zakynthos  (full for this year)
2019    Spain, Andalucia, (full for this year)
More details are to be found on Julia’s website
Kate Rodrigues thanked members for their support during her two years as Chairman and regretted that it was not viable for her to continue in the role. She was presented with flowers on behalf of the society by Anne Hamerton
Di Alexander
Kate retires as Chairman
Masking fluid flamingoes
African Elephants

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