Watercolor Resist Painting - from guest blogger Heidi Stephens

Watercolor Resist Painting - from guest blogger Heidi Stephens

Hi Painters! Today I will be using Smiling Hippo watercolor paints to show you a fun technique called resist painting. This technique takes advantage of the negative space of the canvas to create a design or pattern as opposed to using the color, or positive space, to make the design. The resist layer is created with a material that repels water. If you like to paint with paper, you can use white colored pencil, crayon, or a masking tape or fluid. I like to paint a lot on canvases and other non-traditional surfaces which wax will not stick to, so I used masking fluid in today’s post.

The first step is to sketch your design or pattern. This is actually kind of optional. I chose to draw a traditional elaborate mandala, so I wanted to sketch it first. If you have steadier hands or want a looser pattern, feel free to skip the sketch! Next, you want to use your resist material to draw over your design. Remember! The parts you color in now will be white at the end, so you can do simple outlines of your pattern, or fill in some parts for a variation.

Third step is to paint! If you use masking fluid, you absolutely must wait until it is completely dry or it will get water mixed in and not dry properly. This is even more crucial if you are using paper because the extra water mixed in will fuse it to your paper and the masking fluid will rip when you try to remove it.

If you used crayon or colored pencil, step back in awe at the beautiful resist painting you just made! Or if you used masking fluid, once the paint is completely dry, the last step is to remove it! You can use anything rubbery or silicone material to peel up the masking fluid, or even your finger. There are specialty tools for this, but honestly I just use an eraser for large areas and a pencil eraser or the corner of a pencil grip for small areas. Be careful not to rub over the entire painting or the top layer of glitter can rub off and we can’t have that! I love the suspense this makes as you wait to see the final reveal of your art.

Ta-da! In this post I used a few colors that sadly are not available anymore, as well as a round quarter-pan mini palette and a dual quarter-pan which I believe both will be released soon, so keep an eye out and use this link for a discount! Happy painting!

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