Live Version of Watercolour - starting 8 June

May 27, 2022 | 1 Comment

In case you haven’t already heard…

I’m excited to announce that I’ll be going through the Watercolour course with a cohort starting on Wednesday 8th June 2022 and lasting for 7 weeks.

This Live Version (Group Run-through) of Watercolour is available to anyone who enrolls in the course and will involve:

  • Working through the in-depth Watercolour lessons within the classroom together with an inspiring group of sketchers from around the world. You’ll be able to watch each week’s videos at a time that suits you.
  • Sharing your work inside custom-designed galleries within the classroom and being part of an active community – commenting and inspiring each other.
  • Discussing all kinds of watercolour topics inside the forum (sharing favourite tools and paint colours etc!)
  • Asking me questions at any time during the week within a dedicated question section for each lesson.
  • Participating in the special weekly live teaching sessions (hosted on YouTube) where I will recap on the current week’s concepts, review selected work from the classroom, answer your questions in real-time and do another demo.


When I started sketching with watercolour I struggled to control the water in my mixes, I constantly created murky or flat washes and I was always fiddling and overworking. Does this sound familiar?

I realise now, that if I’d understood the properties of water and some basics of how pigment suspended in water behaved, there would have been a lot less frustration and disappointment! I would have understood why trying to ‘fix’ a damp wash on the page is rarely a good idea and that magic happens when I apply a juicy mix of pigment and water and leave it alone.

SketchingNow Watercolour contains all the essential watercolour concepts which I wish I’d known at the start. And these concepts can be applied to any way of working, not just mine!

This course contains a systematic approach to using watercolour for quick sketching based on 12 years of being an obsessive sketcher. We will look at topics such as:

  • how to increase your control of water – whether using a tight control or working looser and taking risks
  • how to decide when to layer/glaze and when to work wet-in-wet
  • how to create vibrant colours with a limited palette
  • how to be more confident with your use of colour
  • how to apply all these techniques to sketching on location
  • how to develop your own style for watercolour sketching

And much more! In fact, I’ve added a lot of additional material to this course since I first released it – including a bonus lesson on Pigment Characteristics. The videos in this lesson explain how to create more watercolour magic through a better understanding of the pigments in your paint in a hands-on way which is not too technical. 

This week I’ve been itching to play with my paints all day long but haven’t had much spare time. I did manage to do some mixing strips!

My thoughts at the time were:

Choosing the best watercolour paints for your palette is much more than simply the colours (hues).

In my opinion, the most exciting aspect of watercolour is all of the different pigment characteristics that create ‘pigment parties’ on the page. Just choosing granulating colours is not enough, it’s the combination of different pigment types that creates the best parties.

My favourite pigment in my palette at the moment is Schmincke French Ultramarine PB29 which creates lots watercolour magic… and these swatches were done on Alpha paper – so imagine how wild they would be on true watercolour paper?

I’ve also started going through some of my brushes and did this fun page to look at the marks made by 4 different brushes. I’ll be talking more about this issue during the live sessions as we go through Watercolour!

And finally…this simple sketch of empty teabags is a good example of why I love watercolour!

The right ratio of pigment to water and the right combination of pigments led to some good pigment party (even though a subdued one) in what could be considered the most boring subject matter ever! I also applied the paint quickly and confidently (no fiddling) with some varied strokes. And then I sat back and watched it dry!

The story behind the subject…

I always travel (even overseas) with loose leaf tea (and of course, it’s always loose leaf at home too) but to make it easier to dispose of the tea leaves I make a concession and use empty teabags. It’s the only time when I use paper and string for a cup of tea.

During my recent trip I was getting very low in my supply but today a new order of a few hundred arrived. So I’m ready to go away again now. (But have no plans at the moment to do so!)

More is happening behind the scenes, but that’s enough for today. There will be more watercolour related articles coming up soon.

If you have enrolled in Watercolour at any time you can be part of this Live Version for free – simply go to the Watercolour classroom and instructions for joining are listed below the welcome video. Please note: Watercolour On Location is a completely separate course and I will be hosting a Live Version of that later in the year.

If you are interested in enrolling in Watercolour and being part of the cohort going through the course in June and July and participating in the bonus live sessions please find out more here. If you have any questions please use the contact form and ask away!

I’m really looking forward to going through the Watercolour course again.

Will you be joining?

Do you have any big watercolour sketching aspects that you would like me to discuss?

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