During my return from a recent trip to Idaho, I found this old abandoned farm house, right next to the highway. Since I love old, dilapidated wood structures, I stopped and took a few photos. For whatever reason, a photo of one of the windows appealed to me and I decided to paint it. This watercolor, the first one I've done since October of 2016, took about 20 hours to complete and I had a blast putting it together.
There is a feeling of sadness, however, when walking among such structures. What misfortune led to it being abandoned? What became of the people who lived there. The hardship they must have endured. The farm life is a life of damned hard work and no guarantee of success. I can only imagine the memories attached to this old, rotting house that was once someone's home. I felt compelled to try to capture all of that in this painting.
I used a very simple set-up:
Sakura Koi 18 watercolor set
a stainless steel ruler
Lowe-Cornell #2 round
W&N Cotman #4 rigger
Robert Simmons Sapphire S85 #1 round
Grumbacher 4620-R #4 round
Strathmore 400 series cold press (probably 80 lb.)
I used painters tape to tape the paper to a drawing board. I completed the drawing mostly freehand, but used a ruler to achieve the straight lines I needed for accuracy. I'm left-handed, so I started in the upper right corner and worked my way across to lower right. Because of the technique I use, it's easier to paint wood grain vertically, so any horizontal elements were achieved by turning the drawing 90 degrees on my desk so the the horizontal elements were oriented in a vertical direction. Breaking from the purist tradition, I did use a small amount of Chinese White to highlight a couple of edges here and there, but 99% of the painting was achieved using only traditional pigments and no opaque paint.