World Watercolor Month Days #25 and #26

Not sure how I forgot to post my bit of watercolor yesterday but here it is. I have a new palette and I’m debating how to set it up, so I’m still messing around to see what colors some new possibilities become when mixed with other more known players. Seems to me that if you’re going to have another palette it should be substantially different in some ways from the other ones you’ve already got going. I don’t know. On the other hand if it was wildly different from what I commonly use, chances are I wouldn’t use it? Ack.

Yesterday I received my first postcard for the August Poetry Postcard Festival. Today I received postcards #2 and #3. They blew me away, humbled me and filled me with gratitude.

World Watercolor Month Days #25 and #26

Goodbye Cerulean Blue…

Hello Manganese Blue Hue.

I’m taking it as a good sign that many of this palette’s colors needed topping off. I seized the moment to replace that cerulean blue with a new color to see if that suits my eye better.

The days of comfortable en plein air are numbered at this point so I spent a good part of today out at a local conservation area. I’d forgotten the pens I meant to bring to do homework for an online class so I used my rigger brush instead and had a good time.

Pro tip: make sure there’s no other paintings around before you start spattering…

Gratuitous haiku:

Hello Manganese
Goodbye Cerulean Blue
I’m ready to paint

Palette Report – Mijellio Fusion Airtight

In June while I was getting ready for a week-long watercolor class I posted a photo of a “travel” palette I had set up with the colors suggested by the teacher. Several people asked about it and I thought now, having used it awhile since I’d give a few thoughts about it. Here it is right after I loaded it up with paint.

Here’s a closer look from the other day when I was out painting. I wish I had taken a better view but I was interested more in what was going on in the seal area.

This is after I washed it with just some water and a fingernail brush and a couple paper towels. I thought I would be taking out the gasket that you can see but it didn’t seem to want to come out and I didn’t want to dig it out and then not be able to get it back in.

There are a number of brands of this type of palette out there. I got one that is rather generic and this is a popular brand – Mijellio Fusion Airtight/Leakproof Palette. I honestly don’t see any difference between the two palettes (except someone had nicked the removable inner mixing tray out of the generic one, but since I never take it out of the one that has it, I’m not too worried about it) other than the color of the lid.

I do like the size of the wells and the size of the mixing areas and it is fairly light to carry. I set it on top of my pochade box in its travel bag and it rides flat. I started doing this because it wasn’t really dried when the class started and it was very hot and humid that week so it never really dried then either.

I don’t find that paint beads up, but I don’t worry about that anyway. I don’t remove the clear removable tray to use as another mixing area although I’d be tempted to put additional globs of paint on it for an extended palette sometime. Until then it just sits in the lid as my bigger mixing area.

I DO find that some colors – cerulean blue I’m looking at you dude – will not stick to its well. That one in particular but also the orange (also a stickier, less drying paint) and others have at times slid right out of the well into the mixing areas. I use a bit of broken credit card or plastic knife to scrape them back into the well but it’s messy.

This led to the messy edges but in all honesty nothing seems to escape out of the palette so I am grateful for that. Someone had asked if it kept the paint moister and I’d give it a “sort of” – the paints that are stickier by nature stay stickier and I’d say the rest are perhaps marginally easier to re-wet.

So there you have it yet another palette review for the world.

Getting ready for June

In June, I’ll be taking a week-long plein air watercolor class with Tony Conner of Bennington VT via which holds classes throughout the Berkshires. A couple years ago I did a one day class with them at the Clark. This one will be in Stockbridge.

As a collector of art supplies, I was so happy to receive the supply list and then I started comparing it to the things I already had and… I had most of it. I finally put in an order for some full sheets of paper to cut into hunks and since I was doing that, a couple sheets of the plastic corrugated stuff which I like to use as my mounting board. I threw in a few brushes I’d had on my wish list. Locally I picked up a couple paint colors and one brush and a new eraser. Had that “back to school feel” except where you already have all the textbooks and notebooks you’ll need.

I’d recently gotten a new palette to try out so I set it up using just the colors on the teacher’s list.

You can compare it to my normal traveling palette here. My home palette is larger but seems too large to carry around.

I guess I’ll try out these colors and this palette before heading out. The new brushes are cool too. I’m all about the tools for the job.