5 reasons to try watercolours

I have always dabbled in art. I started out as a standard child, colouring in, using crayons and colouring pens. I always LOVED stationery shops, and was jealous of my friends felt tip collections! Ha ha

At school I was marked down for art. The loose style I had did not fit into the geometric guidelines we had in my Malaysian school. Artwork was meant to look realistic, and capture the scene. I tried to capture the same style as the Where’s Wally books! 

I kept going, due ot my love of art more than teacher encouragement. In fact, at University, I was told that my tutor was determined to get me to quit as he felt I wasn’t good enough for the course. What an idiot!!! 

I didn’t quit. In fact I got pretty good grades and came out with Student of the Year, which he begrudgingly gave me. Ha ha..

For years I travelled and painted using acrylics. I loved them, you can paint over mistakes, you can work from dark to light and not have to worry too much about leaving areas of white. 

As I ventured into the wedding industry, however, it was clear that the trend was watercolours, so I had to learn pretty quickly. I created some joyful pieces in the beginning! I look back now and try not to cringe. I found it challenging to change the way I had been programmed to paint, but the challenge was great. 

I can honestly say now, that I LOVE watercolours and will probably not go back to acrylics in a hurry. Except for when im painting boards, jackets or murals. 

Here are my 5 reasons why you should try watercolours too, and discover the same love I did…

  1. They are not messy AT ALL. They are mostly water, and also water-soluble, meaning that any spills can be easily mopped up and washed out of clothes. Its actually perfect for kids, I’m not really sure why they’re not used as much. 
  2. They can be really cost effective. I buy the tubes, at around $12 each for the Art Spectrum brand. But each one lasts for months, and I paint EVERYDAY. If it’s only a hobby, then your paints will last much longer. Even cheaper are the pans of paints. Not at all like oils or acrylics.
  3. You can create some really beautiful effects like the wet on wet bleeds and translucent layers. Watercolours have their own mind and create some really amazing effects if you know how to work with them. 
  4. Each watercolour painting is 100% unique. Perfect for letting go. You can only control watercolours so much. The bleeds and washes do there own thing, and as such, it’s very hard, if not impossible to replicate a previous piece of work. So rather than stress about it looking the same, you can let go and know that each piece is truly original. 
  5. It’s therapeutic. At the end of the day, whatever paint you are using, the art of painting is therapeutic, relieving stress and taking your mind away from everyday life. Whether you produce results you want to frame, or just experiments, the process is super enjoyable. 

So there you go; those are my 5 reasons to try watercolours. So grab yourself some paints, paper and have a go at watercolours. Even better, sign up to a watercolour class near you, and enjoy the process with others. I have a variety of classes every month, check them out here. Alternatively, head over to my YouTube channel and paint along to my simple tutorials.