Friday, 25 May 2018

Supracolor anniversary edition, and a visit to a special place

I prepared a long post for today, but very annoyingly, Blogger has completely messed up my posts. When I wanted to add the finishing touches yesterday, it had disappeared, and instead, I had two identical copies of another draft. I don't know what Blogger has done with my post, and I can't really understand how this could happen. But it certainly is most annoying. I thought that technology is supposed to make our lives easier, but I feel that in the past two or three years, it has just become more and more complicated and annoying, and more expensive. But I better don't get started about it all....

So here's a shorter version of my post for today. In my last post, I talked about the Schmincke limited edition metallics watercolour box, and today, I'm showing you another special edition that I got the other day, the Caran d'Ache Supracolor limited edition anniversary box with 30 new colours.

Actually, I'm not really too fond of limited edition art supplies. But I simply couldn't resist this box. I do love Caran d'Ache products, and living in Switzerland, I grew up with them and have been using them all my life. They are readily available here, and are among one of the very few things that are actually cheaper here than pretty much every where else.

The problem with limited edition art supplies is, well, obviously, that their availability is limited, and once they're gone, they're gone. With something like the Schmincke metallic watercolours, it doesn't bother me too much, because I won't use them much anyway. I bought them just for fun, and I might play around with them occasionally, but I doubt I'd miss them once they're used up. But with other supplies, if something works for me and I like using it, and get used to it, well, I want to be able to buy it again. So basically, if I know that something isn't available, I'd just rather not use it at all. It may well be that the colour charts below are the only time these gorgeous pencils will ever be used.

Actually, I am a bit confused about these. On the box, it says that they are exclusive colours and on the pencils themselves, it says Limited Edition. But on their website, it also says that to celebrate the 30 years of Supracolor, they are "enriching the Supracolor® Soft colour palette with thirty brand new colours in addition to the 120 existing shades". So maybe it's just this particular box that is limited edition, and the colours will eventually be available? It seems a bit of a shame to create so many new colours and then not actually sell them. I guess we'll have to wait and see.

The lighter ones also work very well on darker backgrounds.

Making these colour charts has inspired me to take out and try my other watercolour pencils again. I like them, and I think they could be really useful for sketching outside, if you don't always want to take a proper watercolour box with you. I like how they come alive once you add water. But I haven't actually used them very much, so I'm now trying to get the hang of them.

Last Monday, I got to spend the morning at one of my favourite places, a nearby park famous for its rhododendrons and azaleas. A truly gorgeous, peaceful and tranquil place. Well, until lunchtime, when the masses started to arrive. I've never seen so many people queuing at the entrance when I left. But then it was a public holiday, and the first day of really fine weather in quite a while. There used to be a decent connection but unfortunately, they changed the bus time tables a while ago, which now makes getting there by public transport a real pain in the neck (1 hr 10 minutes, whereof 45 minutes is just waiting for connections, vs 15 minutes by car), otherwise I would go there much more often.

Friday, 11 May 2018

The end of the 100 Day Project, some travel sketches, and two new palettes

I knew, when I decided to take part in The 100 Day Project, that I wasn't going to do it every day, and that my holiday would certainly be a problem. But I ended up doing so little while I was away, that I decided there really just was no point to pretend and continue. So I'm just back to my normal goal of trying to draw daily, or least as much as possible. So these sketches where the last I did for the challenge before before my holiday.

Before my holiday, I put together a new watercolour palette, big enough to contain 24 colours, compact enough to carry around with me. It took me ages to put it together (I'm not good at making decisions....) but finally I came up with a selection I was happy with. At least for the moment. Some colours might not be essential, and admittedly, I chose them mainly because I liked them. That's the problem with colours. You really don't need that many to achieve a lot. But they are just so beautiful. Irresistible. We'll see how useful they will proof. That's the nice thing with watercolour palettes. You can always change and adjust them.

My goal of doing some outside sketching on my holiday wasn't very successful. I really only managed two times, at the beginning, when it was still warm. In the second half, the weather got rather cold and very windy. Certainly not the kind of weather to take out your art materials. At least not for me. But I got some drawing done, at least.

And then, although I've decided that I really have enough watercolour palettes now, and I really, really don't need another one for a while, I bought another one. I'm afraid I just couldn't resist. It's a limited edition from Schmincke, with twelve metallic colours and six metallic golds. I probably won't use them very often, the colours are quite subtle, but it'll be fun to get them out from time to time, and you can also mix them with your normal colours to add a bit of sparkle. And they come in that special square-ish palette, which is always useful to have.

It's difficult to catch the sparkle with the camera, but they really do shine and sparkle on paper.