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By: John Beard

Watercolours of the Staffordshire Countryside

Pages: 105 Ratings:
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For many a year, pursuing the art of watercolour painting, attending art school and gaining practical and theoretical knowledge of the technicalities of using the difficult medium and becoming more adept, the idea of writing and illustrating a watercolour book was something I aspired to, and using these skills to reveal the beauty of the Staffordshire countryside, I wanted to portray this in landscape paintings, by adapting a limited palette.

Being a Staffordshire lad, at an early age, exploring the countryside close by to my county town, Stafford, the natural, beautiful living countryside that I love dearly, inspired me to capture the changing environment. At first, being unaware of the many facets of technique that watercolours have to offer to create paintings and being ill-informed of the medium, my enthusiasm led to develop on the art of watercolour painting by going along to the borough library to swot up on the subject, by looking at step-by-step examples (landscapes). First, by using graphite pencil tonal sketches, before going on to the art of watercolour painting, and by constant use of a brush, soon developed my skills of applying washes of variable nuances of colours, adapting the ways of well-known water colourists that had developed their skills, consequently inspired me to work on my own style of approach, and after many years of mastering the art, I thought of using my own materials for the basis of the book.
Being fascinated with the medium of watercolour pigments, the thing that intrigued my desire to pursue using them was the fact of being told that watercolour painting is a difficult skill to achieve, comparable to oil painting, and I wanted to turn my hand to the art. Over many years’ experience of painting , my skills developed, after the best part of 10 years to regular committal, and diligent perseverance of the art, I became quite adept to the many techniques that watercolour painting had to offer in order to come up with successful paintings, especially landscapes. This inspired me to write a watercolour book of the Staffordshire landscapes, capturing the natural beauty portraying the vibrant well-proportioned compositional arrangements of objects and topographical features that developed over the years, to what had become an archive array of collective landscape paintings, that could be used as the basis for the book – watercolour of the Staffordshire countryside, of which, you will agree, pertaining to the last chapter IV – the picture gallery revealing my way of painting landscape by using the difficult medium can be overcome by constant practice of technique of brush, by using a limited palette and a few brushes, as stipulated, you can, like I developed in doing, be skilled enough to create and produce lovely landscapes, and possibly of exhibition quality.

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