controlling watercolor, light in watercolours, presentation in art,

It started with that post from last week.

You know, that one about “Control.”

Then things progressed. As they often do when it comes to me and art!


controlling watercolor, light in watercolours, presentation in art,
Be Light, watercolors:



Light Within, watercolors

Turquoise and gold shimmers with  beautiful white light from within. This image lets the imagination run free.

The wild and free, expansiveness of watercolors turned loose….. well, I think the ‘guided control’ approach came in handy.

I did like the control that the photo editor provided me, when it was time to explore matting options.




Technique Control

I needed to have an element of control for this image to be successful.

But, I had to walk a fine line. Having too much water everywhere would be a near disaster, and not enough water with all hard edges… would be disaster.

Its exciting!

The wet in wet watercolor technique is a basic one for beginners.  Once you’ve got it down pat, your paintings will just, take a major leap forward.

I’ve used this technique to enhance my soft edges. This improves the depth in the abstract work.



Color Control

I’ve limited my color palette.

Two colors only have been used.

Daniel Smith Aztec Gold  and  Manganese Blue.

This is the way I ensure I don’t create mud.

That I achieve more depth, better tonal values, and better unification and harmony in the artwork.


The fewer colors I use…. The Better.

That is why I always have to paint so many paintings at a time…. I’m dying to play with colors. And so I just paint more images, big or little.    Even if they are tiny. Who cares?!

At least this way I’m getting my ‘color fix’  and, not ruining a painting in the doing!




Darkness can be a friend….

This image below, is the exact same painting you saw in Control Freak.

The difference here is the dense black matt surrounding the art.

Black can at times absorb color and light.  I’ve tried to keep the ratio at the ‘just right’ degree to prevent a lot of that from happening.

The dark contrast does emphasize the white band around the border.  I put this white inset border in to help the contrast ratio out a bit.


controlling watercolor, getting light in watercolor,
Black Surrounds…darkness absorbs light




Learning Outcomes

What….. have I learned or could learn from this art endeavor?


  • Once again, a Limited Palette can be very helpful in improving success rates
  • Good, 100% cotton paper absorbs & spreads paint more consistently and reliably
  • Clever, thoughtful approaches to matting can accentuate & improve an average image
  • Use the computer, experiment with shapes and matts
  • To get my ‘color fix’ …. just paint more images

Its OK,  if some, if none,  are brilliant. Or even pleasant.      “It Is O.K.”    







Published by debiriley

The act of creation, in any media is a fascinating and magical process. I simply love to create. Expressing in color, line, tone, texture - as if, they were words upon a page. Creating a uniquely me, interpretation. Enjoy More of my "one-of-a-kind" expressive art at and,

10 thoughts on “Light

  1. So beautiful dear Debi, as always, I always visit your blog, and I love to watch your colours and art works. Thank you for sharing with us. By the way, let me add this too, maybe you noticed I changed my blog to private, because of some security things. So, I sent invitations to all my blogger friends. To you too, but probably you missed it, between the other wordpress notifications. I just wanted you to know this, I would like to see you in my blog too, don’t think of opposite of this. Whenever you wish you can make a request for this, or I am sending a new invitation again for you, check your mail box. Thank you, have a nice weekend, Love, nia

    Liked by 1 person

    1. hi Holly! gosh, some are tiny, like 2×2 inch miniatures! and some of the others are 12 x 24; each one that I do is different! a few were 8×10 too 🙂 and the oil painting in today’s post is large at 4 foot.
      you know, the main thing really – is to paint from your heart as much as you possibly can. hundreds.
      this might sound silly but I will say it anyway “paint so often, you become one with the brush and paints” and then it is a lovely FUN Dance 🙂


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