Lake Shasta and Color Play

Almost every year, Labor Day weekend is spent with friends on a houseboat on Lake Shasta in Northern California. I didn’t draw very much this year, just some small vignettes and some color play.

This first spread uses a new color I added in my palette to test out, Aquarius Mummy Transparent Red. The color is far less orange than it looks in this photo and makes beautiful neutrals with the blues in my palette.


Vignettes on the lake. Art Graf , pen and ink.

The start of a sketch that got abandoned for a beer tasting session.

And a series of quick captures of the landscape.


You can see in the last couple of sketches that I tried capturing that warm glow at the bottom of the sky and wasn’t happy. So I thought I’d try and figure if switching up a color in my palette would help achieve that blue to yellow transition without giving me green or grey in between. There were a few limitations I wanted to work with:

1) I love the blues I have. So neither Cobalt Blue nor Ultramarine Blue were going to change.
2) I work mostly wet-in-wet, so combos that only work when glazed on top of each other weren’t going to work for me.

I’m less married to the yellows I have, which are New Gamboge, Hansa Yellow Medium and Monte Amiata Natural Sienna. The raw Sienna version (bottom left) had no strange green tone and I might consider switching it out for the Monte Amiata…

I was hoping for a yellower yellow, though, and Gail Wong recommended Naples Yellow, which really does give you a nice gradient with no greens.

But I’m not sure I’m ready to switch out any of my yellows for a color that opaque. Yet.

About Suhita Shirodkar

obsessive-sketcher. graphic designer.
This entry was posted in california, supplies, Supplies and Materials, watercolor and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Lake Shasta and Color Play

  1. I really like your lake scenes, and your swatches!!


  2. betsy angene says:

    Do you ever use cad yellow medium?


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