Direct Watercolor Strategy #4: Zoom and Crop

Direct Watercolor is challenging in itself. If you choose a subject that’s challenging too, perhaps it makes sense for you to zoom in and paint just one part? Makes life simpler and you can study the parts of the subject that you might find challenging, one at a time.

Strategy #4: Zoom and Crop
Especially with life drawing, I often feel compelled to paint the whole figure. But tackling a complex subject as a whole can be intimidating and confusing when you’re using a new medium or technique.

Today I did a series of little 5×7 inch pieces. Some worked out better than others.

Here is the quarter sized Arches Cold Press sheet with all of them.



Another bit of simplification that helped was using a limited color palette, a tip I picked up in a workshop with the artist Uma Kelkar where we did quick landscapes in a very limited palette.

Here’s the list of strategies so far to help ease you into direct painting:
Strategy #1: • Pick a forgiving subject
Strategy #2: • Do a Small Study First
Strategy #3: • Don’t Stop at One
Strategy #4: • Zoom and Crop

If you haven’t joined in yet, join the Direct Watercolor group on facebook here.


About Suhita Shirodkar

obsessive-sketcher. graphic designer.
This entry was posted in challenge, Figure Drawing, Paintings, Supplies and Materials, teaching, tools, watercolor and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Direct Watercolor Strategy #4: Zoom and Crop

  1. Thomas Richmond says:

    immediately caught my attention .love the coloring and shading on all . landscapes are beautiful

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Berrnadette says:

    I like your suggestings…smaller studies and monotone landscapes. I am going to try is. Thanks for your great examples.

    Liked by 1 person

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