Watercolor 101: Exploring Meditative Color For Beginners

Watercolor 101: Exploring Meditative Color For Beginners

The Foundry universe contains multitudes. Some of us are "Artists" with a capital A. Some of us love to pick up a brush and play with color and texture when the mood (or the need to send out a few color-washed "thank you" postcards) strikes. Some of us stand, awe-struck and filled with deep longing, in the intensely pleasing infinite-rainbow-stocked aisles of our local art supply store wondering "but, really, what IS gesso??" before walking quietly back to the fancy journaling pens with a sigh.

The thing is this: the world of watercolor paints accepts all comers. There's a reason that we all have deep sense memories of joyfully fiddling around with a white plastic tray of technicolor ovals of questionable origin...even (especially!) children can add water and watch an entire universe of color meld and merge and build. And (to take a lesson from the delightfully uninhibited artistry of children) it's also TOTALLY OK if you end up painting everything black.


Perhaps you're already the kind of person who knows what a Squirrel Quill Mop is (and maybe you have one in your pocket!) or perhaps you don't consider yourself an art-person, per se, but you'd like to dip your toe/squirrel quill mop into the idea of being an art-person and would like a little guidance. Either way watercolors can make miraculously beautiful works by expert hands (more on that later), but they can also make beautifully miraculous works in the hands of those of us just starting out.

 

Gushing over our newly received shipment of exquisite, hand-ground, sustainably crafted Beam watercolor paints last week (read more about the wonderful indigenous-and-women-led company here), one Foundry family member (Susannah, NOT an artist) said to Heather (DEFINITELY an artist): I love everything about these paintstones but, while I have dreams of being the kind of person who has a dedicated art nook (ahem, Anna), I'm not, like, an "artist". How do I even approach these guys?


The answer is pretty simple: get a brush, some paper, a cup with some water, a little cloth for dabbing, and some paint and see what happens!


And while that is *technically* all there is to it, we thought it might be helpful to put together a few little videos for you all to see these gorgeous paints in action...to show how the brush picks up the color, how the pigment washes and leaps off the page, and (really) how wildly easy it is to make something simple and beautiful, to go from budding artist to blossoming one:

 

 

Let's make some art!

Gorgeous Beam Paintstones here.

Custom cut Mara Metz Wooden Painstone "Palettes" here.

Brushes and Watercolor Pads here.

 

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