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Learning to Paint Gouache Part 1

I have always loved Gouache painting. I think it began around ten years ago when I was going through a bit of a funny time in my life and my great friend Helena took me to a cabin in East Sussex to walk around and soak up some of the beautiful nature around us. 

I had purchased a set of paints and some dark paper but had no idea what i was painting or why. I loved the chalky feel and playing with light and dark but for some reason (life) I put them away in a draw and never took the time to really explore them. 

Well now I have had a bit of time to think about my own creativity I found myself harking back to those original explorations and wanted to try again. This blue painting is my first go at dipping my toe back in to gouache painting and I found the whole process completely exhausting. Really good, but also exhausting.

I think trying something new is supposed to feel scary, exciting, rubbish, self doubting and proud. And in the 45 minutes I was painting I definitely felt all of those! I did find the outcome of my session a little disheartening though so I have youtube a good look over and found I was using the wrong kind of paint! I didn't realise there were two kinds - a watercolour-like gouache that is reactivated by water and a non reactivated acrylic-like one. All those years ago I had bought the acryla base gouache but the newer set I was now painting with was the watercolour one. 

So naturally, I went shopping for yet more art supplies - but this time with a bit more knowledge about what I needed.