Secluded Waterfall 2

Rocks and Waterfall 2

Black watercolor on paper

I made a new version of that previous painting today. This time it’s made almost entirely with just two black paints I made myself- slate (PBk19, pigment from Kremer) and shungite black ochre (PBk10?, pigment from Natural Pigments). Early on I had used a small amount of the charcoal black from the last one but I ended up covering that one small area with the darker black ochre. This time I used a black goat’s hair quill mop brush from Da Vinci for almost everything, except a few corrections at the end. It’s a much coarser hair that doesn’t come to a sharp point at all, more of a thick and rounded blunt, and has almost no snap. It holds a lot of water though and can be used in a way very similar to a Chinese brush.


9 thoughts on “Secluded Waterfall 2

  1. I’m glad you re-visited this image with the coarser brush. Interesting that you are making your own blacks. I’m using water mixable oils and the Weber W black is more workable than the Lukas, but not as deeply black, so, I paint with the W and come back to highlight with the Lukas.

    1. I think the deepest black pigment in oil paint is supposed to be lamp black (PBk6 and 7, not sure which is deeper). In watercolor the deepest I’ve seen was easily aniline black (PBk1) but in regular oils only one brand uses that pigment and the paint they put it in is a mix with another black. I haven’t tried it so I don’t know if that’s deeper than lamp. You can get really deep blacks by mixing transparent complementary colors though. All the paints used in the mix have to be transparent to get the deepest black.

      Is the reason you use water mixable oils because of solvent issues? In the art forum that I go to people sometimes point out that even regular oil paint can be used and cleaned without solvents. Just add a little oil to increase flow (or nothing at all, I normally paint straight from the tube) and for clean up use soap and water. I always shake the brush in a little jar of solvent that I only open briefly at clean up to get the worst of it off, and normally I don’t bother with soap and water after that.

      1. Thanks for the mixing info. Since I’m a black and white painter, I’m going to have to become more proactive about my pigments. Solvents are an issue in my choice of paints. Smell is also a big factor. But, I’ve always just used peppermint soap to clean my brushes, whether it’s oil, water-mixable, or latex house paint.

    1. The two big advantages to black watercolor are that it’s less permanent than a lot of inks so you can lift or rework it more easily, and also some pigments will produce a much stronger texture than ink would. I think mars black (especially Daniel Smith’s version, called lunar black) gives some of the strongest textures in black watercolor. Lamp black gives the least texture, and I’m pretty sure lamp black is the pigment used in pigment based black inks. Ink just uses a different vehicle/binder than watercolor. 🙂

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