Thank you Patty, David, Aquila, Celeste, Kake, Llalena, Spiral and Lorraine
Celeste you asked what other mediums I use with watercolour - mmmm, sometimes pastel pencils for subtleish changes but with some more dramatic use of pastel line, sometimes pastels (Unison, love them best) and sometimes oil pastel (always Sennelier, they are streets ahead of any other brand for this), used first as a resist. I can't think of anything else off the top of my head but all those regularly.
David it's difficult to explain why I like the square format! I always have. I don't particularly like the standard paper proportions and tend to work with squares, long thin formats or just off square's - sadly this usually means custom framing for paper based media. Even with squares as I like a 3inch mount at the top and sides with 3.5 inches at the bottom - to stop that 'falling out of the frame' look that equal sides can have.
This one is
a cruciform compostion which is what I'm a bit unsure of.
I like the different dynamics of a square, or a long thin canvas. I like the look of a group of squares hung together. It's just a very personal thing
I find the golden mean as a composition is a bit fixed, unmoving and prefer the way Degas creates his compositions - anyone wanting to study contemporary compositions should start with him, he was very very innovative.
I choose the format to suit the image but the square often suits my images.
With the seascapes a square works especially well because they are about lateral strands of colour and so a wide format would create a very different feel - more tranquil but more boring (IMO) and a portrait format enhances the distance, especially the long thin format.
Thin lines are often made by scratching through the wet paint with the end of the paintbrush - it damages the paper a little and creates a darker thin line, I find that really useful.