Colorful Koi

I love this painting, the depth of color is very much as you see it here.  Usually I work with a cruciform under painting but here I used the bulls eye, this threw me at first and I had to tell that little voice who is always there reminding me of the rules of good design… that I was going to paint it anyway so shut up. 

Sometimes we have to break the rules to create good art. 

I wanted to get a better picture of this painting before I frame it, I still need to flatten it out as some of the bottom area is pretty wrinkled.    If you have any questions about this piece let me know, I’ll explain anything and try to help you understand this process.  My style is one where I allow the painting to dictate where the painting is going next so that is actually the hardest thing to explain.

The technical stuff I can help you with anytime. 


BTW…it will be for sale for $700. plus S&H. I may enter it into a fall show before I release it to a buyer. 

Heres how I flatten out a large painting.

I use a large table top where it can sit for at least 24 hours undisturbed.  This in itself can be difficult when you live in a house that is 1260 Sq feet.  So after dinner, I will usually use the Dining table which sits six.  


I place paper towels ( or any absorbent paper) on the table and lay the painting face down onto the towels.  I don’t use real towels because they are too thick and won’t allow the painting to get really flat. After I have the painting laying face down on the paper towels, I spray the back of the watercolor paper with water and rub the water into the paper with my hands. I make sure no water goes over the side and onto the actual front of the painting. I get it wet enough so that when I press the painting down the water can evaporate into the towels and leave the painting flat. I cover the BACK of the painting with more paper towels and make sure every part is covered.  Then I lay a  piece flat foam core ( you can use wood make sure it won’t bleed if wet or anything that is flat and larger then the painting) which is slightly larger than the painting. I then put weights ( usually books and heavy pieces of marble)on the foam core making sure not to leave any spaces between the weights. I line the books up edge to edge.  The tiles of marble go on top for added weight.   Make sure the weight is evenly distributed.  I leave all of this as is for at least 24 hours often 48 hours. When I take off the weights the painting is totally dry and usually completely flat.  If its humid I may have to put the weights back on if  I see that the Watercolor paper is still damp. Its OK if the paper towels are damp.  I of course use these towels over and over.  For the smaller pieces I have a press which works great and pictures of my press are on my other daily painting blog.

check it out there is a search box you can use to find the post.


One thought on “Colorful Koi

  1. Your painting is very lovely and complex! I’m painting koi lately too. And have been writing about it, but for some reason my tags aren’t coming up! Have you ever experienced that?

    Your koi is so crisp and detailed. Mine will be somewhat blurry and murky — like my disappearing tags!

    Anyway, bravo!!!

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