Super fun watercolour experiments sketching fruit and veg

January 17, 2024 | 2 Comments

This morning I hosted the first livestream for the Live Version of Watercolour which started last week. It was so much fun! We were looking at ‘controlling water’ and I did three different demos and answered lots of great questions.

In the second demo, I shared this sketchbook page that I did earlier in the week. Rather than doing a single sketch of a plate of vegetables (the exercise for this week) I had filled a double-page spread with small sketches of individual fruit and vegetables. In each sketch, I experimented with different types of washes – watery, juicy, and pasty – and I had a lot of fun combining washes of different wetness. I was particularly interested in getting various washes to merge – intentionally creating happy accidents.

I was having so much fun that I quickly scribbled some notes next to each sketch using my fude pen and not worrying how messy my writing was. (This is a little out of character as I like to control my text and make it as neat as possible. But the messy writing (for me) is a sign of just how much fun I was having.

This page makes me smile and I just love looking at it. And there is something very liberating about experimenting without any pressure to produce a finished sketch (a complete still life).

Confession: I have a bunch of plastic fruit and vegetables that I used for this page. Here is my collection – some are more realistic-looking than others. 🙂

Of course, it is MUCH nicer to sketch real fruit and veg but these plastic props are great for sketching a wide variety of objects in one sitting and for focusing on the main planes and volumes (no texture to get distracted by). And it is a wonderful challenge to make a watercolour sketch that looks better than the original object.

Thanks to everyone who was part of this morning’s livestream. It was really great to re-do some of these sketches in a live session – and also to do the watery and juicy studies of a simple Scottish church example as well. If you have purchased my Watercolour course at any time the replay is now in the classroom. And it’s still possible to join the Live Version (there are still 6 livestreams left) – find out more here.


  • Jamie C says:

    Great idea to have such a wonderful collection of props! I love this page of veg! The demos in the livestream were fabulous and I got so much out of them! My fifth time through this watercolor class, and I always learn so much more every time!

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