30x30 Direct watercolour challenge 2019

May 30, 2019 | 4 Comments

Another quick post to make sure you all know about the 30×30 direct watercolour challenge for the month of June. It’s hosted by Marc Taro Holmes and Uma Kellar – check out their posts to find out more about it.

I will be doing the challenge almost by default as I am travelling for the entire month. Due to Sundays being my rest day and one week of teaching in the beginning of the month, I will not be doing one each day. But instead I will be numbering them as I go during the month.

I start 95% of my sketches direct with watercolour but then often switch to pen after I have the big shapes on the page. So I use the term ‘paint only’ to describe my direct watercolour sketches.

These days I do a lot of paint-only sketches, so 30 in a month should be relatively easy for me, but I still have to be focused or else I will pull out my pen and start drawing!

This year I want to think about how I use watery, juicy and pasty washes when I work in ‘paint only’. And I also want to think about how I use edges (drawing with my brush) vs shapes (using the side of my dagger brush).

Here are a few direct watercolour/paint-only sketches which I have done so far in this trip! It’s definitely easier to do some subject matter (coffee cups and food, landscapes or a single building) rather than more complex scenes.


Are you going to do the 30×30 challenge?



  • Karen Hutt says:

    Hi Liz
    Thanks for the update on the 30 day Challenge, I had no ideas, will try and give it a go!!!

  • Jonathan Johnston says:

    Hi Liz,

    Sounds interesting. Yes, I’m doing it this year. Will have a few urban sketching days and perhaps find some interesting subjects around the house as well. But mostly working from photos, I’m afraid. I agree re: some subjects are easier. Often do landscapes without ink, but taking off the training wheels for the no pencil lines, even quick ones.

  • I only realised today the challenge was on again. Will try to join in, small pieces, that is sure.

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