Generosity times two

Yesterday when I returned home from Kamouraska there was a large box waiting for me on my desk. When I opened it I found — neatly wrapped and unopened — not one, but three linen-bound hand•book watercolour journals sent to me by Gretchen who I have never met but who follows my blog. She had read about my experiments with these books and thought I might enjoy using the watercolour versions which I had never tried. To my surprise the books are larger than expected. I thought they would be 5.5″ x 8.5″ but they are almost double that at 10.5 x 8.25. Almost letter size. Beautiful objects these are — covered in gray linen and filled with 95 lb acid free watercolour paper. Of course I had to try one out immediately. Gretchen had warned me that some people were not keen on the paper, herself included, but I had quite good results and I will certainly fill these books up. I like the format because I can do several sketches on one page. Thank you for your generosity Gretchen!

My only frustration with today’s sketch is the French Ultramarine paint from Daniel Smith which seems to be defective. The pigment separates and granulates, leaving a blue sediment everywhere. We also noticed this in the Kamouraska workshop  when I spent a morning mixing paints and comparing triads, warm and cool colours and transparent vs. opaque pigments.

Speaking of Kamouraska, workshop participant Mai sent me a lovingly created montage of photos that she took at the workshop. You will really get a sense of the beauty and serenity of this corner of Quebec when you watch it here. Thanks for your generosity Mai!


19 Comments on “Generosity times two”

  1. Monique says:

    How thoughtful!
    Really..the kindness of sometimes unequaled:)

  2. Diane Pearsall says:

    Hi, have you tried M. Graham paint? Available at Dickblick art supplies. It is well worth the cost of shipping and you save big time because it is American prices.

    • I haven’t tried M. Graham but it has been suggested often. I think I will have to give it a try. I have always used Winsor Newton and am quite new to Daniel Smith. I must say that I am quite disappointed in the quality of this one pigment.

  3. marctaro says:

    Great video! So good of her to spend the time to show everyone your trip!

  4. captelaine says:

    What a wonderful montage of photos.. your workshop looked like a lot of fun for everyone. I have used the hand*book watercolor journal… they do make an 8 1/2″ x 5 ” one, but it is landscape format not portrait. I like the paper but then I like the regular handbook journals… and find it a delight to have a paper that will accept a bit more water without buckling…. I also have several of the large format books… I think you’re going to really enjoy them… and I’m looking forward to see what you do with them. A friend of mine… Debo Boddiford is going to Barcelona, and is signed up for one of your workshops… she has instructions to take fabulous notes so she can share what she learns with me when she gets home.

    • Yes, I have been in touch with Debo and I’m looking forward to meeting her. Hopefully I’ll have lots of sketches in those books by the time I get to Barcelona and I’ll bring them with me.

  5. cmchin says:

    It was a real pleasure taking part of your workshop and getting to know Kamouraska in foul or good weather! You deserve the best, Shari, for all your generosity and kindness to us all.


  6. Carola says:

    It was a great workshop Shari, you are not only a great artist but a great teacher. Thank you so much and congratulations for being so successful!
    Mai’s video is like the icing on the cake, what a wonderful souvenir for all of us with the beauty of Bach on the background!!!

    • Carola, it was wonderful to get to know you too. I keep thinking about those beautiful washes you created on the rocks in your last painting. Keep practicing that wet-in-wet!

  7. Jane Hannah says:

    Thank you Mai for your beautiful video and wonderful work Shari, as always 😉

  8. Gina B. says:

    I couldn’t have said it better than Carola: thank you, Mai, for that special present. Your talents are many, I see!

    Shari, I’m pretty sure Daniel Smith would like the chance to exchange or refund that defective paint. Worth a try! (I usually find complaints result in bonuses too!)

    Thanks for everything.

  9. Lee Kline says:

    I have been using Shinhan Watercolors this year and am generally satisfied. Although I do not know nearly as much as you in this area and am probably not as particular. Still, Shinhan satisfies. Me.

  10. Great post and a great story of Gretchen’s generosity, and even more so, her enthusiasm for good art, good sketching, and great watercolor execution. Of course, this probably means that I’ll need to send you some kolinsky sable watercolor brushes from the the winter coat of a Siberian kolinsky sable…

    • Yes, I am so grateful for Gretchen’s generosity. And the added bonus is that I really love the books. So sure, if you any sable brushes hanging around that you are about to bring to a thrift shop or sell in a garage sale, you can send them my way : )

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