Asian Watercolor Painting

Asian water colour painting

Learning The Basics On Asian Watercolor Painting

At the present time, there are a lot of materials artists can use to create art forms of different variations.  Watercolor is just one of them.  Although this is something known and used by many across the globe, there are certain characteristics that make it easy to determine an Asian watercolor painting from that of others.

The tradition behind Asian watercolor painting goes a long way back.  Around 6,000 years ago, the Chinese were very fond of painting various things with the use of ink as well as other mineral-based color pigments.  Technically, they learned about watercolours from Europeans.  It was in the 1900’s when Chinese artists started to adopt the use of watercolors.  In the modern times, traditional painting techniques along with calligraphic ones are utilized by artists to come up with really lovely depiction of animals, figures and landscapes alike.

Asian watercolor painting involves the use of Chinese materials.  Following the traditional method of using watercolors in Chinese painting, the watercolors themselves have mineral as well as vegetable pigments.  They are in a mixture that contains animal glue binders.  As for the brushes, they can be hard or soft.  Another option is to use one made of animal hairs.  They come with fine and long tips, which are perfect for creating various strokes with different expressions.  When creating a painting in a spontaneous manner, blended and broad strokes are used to establish form as well as texture.  In doing so, raw shaun rice is the best option due to its highly absorbent nature.  Detailed artwork, on the other hand, requires finer strokes on mature rice paper.

There are different techniques an artist can choose from.  Most of those used in Chinese watercolor painting are inspired by methods that have been around for ages.  Basically, one has to hold the brush with one’s thumb and index finger.  All the other fingers should close between the brush and one’s palm.  With this, one gets absolute freedom and can be very flexible in doing the basic strokes.  Another technique is called the centre brush technique, which actually involves positioning the brush in such a way that it is perpendicular with the paper.  This helps come up with evenly toned, soft strokes.  The side brush technique, on the other hand, positions the brush with an angle of 90 degrees max in relation to the paper.  It is best for creating rough-looking, broken strokes.

With the way Chinese paintbrushes are designed, one gets to have more color and greater absorption compared to their regular counterparts.  More so, a painter gets to have more than one color in a brush because of its how long and soft its animal hairs are.  The best way to use the brush is to soak it in water, hold it sideways and then roll it in the pigment.  One gets the option to mix the colors on the brush or have them separated on its different parts.  With this, the painter can come up with effects that are of multiple graded color even with a minimal number of strokes.

Asian Watercolor Paining and a Final Word.

Probably the best way to achieve the best output for any Asian watercolor painting is to utilize the right kind of materials.  The brushes and inks used in this traditional art form are highly significant factors in how good one’s creation is in the end.

Our next article will cover Asian Silk Art.