Watercolor Basics, Watercolor Project

Beached Boat at Coronado North Island

A dear friend recently sent me a photo to paint. He said it was the wildest thing he had ever seen!

“This is one of the coolest pictures I’ve ever taken, the boat actually washed up in Coronado and was only there a few days before the military hauled it away. Would make a great painting!”

The boat actually washed up on the beachfront at Coronado Naval Air Station in California. I asked him is he had any information on what happened?

“Don’t know where it washed up from, just know that I had got to it before the Military Police closed the area off. It washed up on the beachfront inside the Coronado Naval Air Station North Island. The MP’s were quick to get rid of it.”

So I set out to paint it!  It has some wonderful character.  The mood is somber and I decided to add in my drawing 2 figures and their dog walking the beach.  I also added some birds in the water and overhead.

The drawing was fairly simple, sky, boat and sand.  I really wanted to get the reflected water effect on this go round, but had some trouble with the washes.

I started with a simple wash of cobalt blue.  I had a hard time with the ‘bead’ and didn’t get a real uniform wash.  I began to overwork it a little.

After the wash, I started on the Island in the distance.  Again, I think feel like the colors were too dark , so near the end of the picture, I white washed it with oriental white to give it a mystic look.

At the end, I added a lot of white.  I also taped off a few area (using masking tape instead of masking fluid) on the boat and some of the mast.  I didn’t really like how the reflection turned out, so I used another wash of cobalt blue and white goush.

I didn’t like the sand particularly, so I spattered yellow Ocher along the right bottom half of the work to give it some character.

At this point, I felt like I may have ruined the work.  J. Zbukvic was saying in my ear and I didn’t listen:

“Many of great works have been ruined by the words, I’ll just do one more thing.”

I may try and paint this work another time.  I used a difference , larger paper too, Strathmore 18×24.    I have Arches , rought 18×24 and I may try the work again later.




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