I feel so excited and most fortunate to have been sent a copy of Jane Betteridge’s beautiful watercolour book ‘Watercolour Nature Unleashed’ by the lovely people at Search Press Publishers.
I’ve had my eye on this book for a wee while as I love Jane’s loose, expressive style – which ranges from bright, bold colours to atmospheric, imagined landscapes.
If you particularly enjoy experimenting and using watercolour with the addition of other media, then this book is a must have! It is a fantastic guide on how to incorporate other mediums into your painting with expert tips and advice from Jane on how to use them.
Note: If Jane Betteridge is already on your radar, you might also already own her book ‘Dynamic Watercolours’ – this book is described as a ‘revised and revitalised’ version of the original book but with some added extras!
As the title of the book might suggest, this book focuses on the natural world and explores a wide range of landscapes and natural forms using a variety of innovative techniques. If you already possess the watercolour bug, but are looking for new ways to inject more colour, texture or dynamism into your work, then this would be a really good place to start. But even if you are a beginner and have only just started to dip your toe into painting, the 4 Step-By-Step tutorials would be a great way of discovering what a versatile medium watercolour can be! Alongside the tutorials, this book also introduces you to a wide range of other media which can be used in conjunction with your watercolour. All of these are clearly explained and demonstrated by Jane, including tips on how to apply them and how they might appear within a finished piece.
I think this book makes an excellent ‘go to’ reference and a source of constant inspiration. Looking through the book you will discover how the different mediums create a variety of textures and effects. These will definitely help to trigger your own creative ideas and get you thinking about how you can interpret the techniques to use within your own painting (I know I have already!).
Jane really has done all the hard work for you here, by experimenting, researching and collating a vast range of techniques. These include: how to use transparent ground over collage, how to incorporate real flowers or leaves into your painting. The effects of using textured grounds such as crackle paste and modelling paste. She also demonstrates how to use stencils, tissue paper, metallic leaf, inks, gouache, bronzing powders, granulation medium, salt, plastic wrap and more! With this expanse of knowledge and ideas at your fingertips, I have no doubt that you will be painting and experimenting well after the cows have come home!
If you would like to see more of Jane’s work you can follow her on Instagram: @jane_betteridge_watercolours or keep an eye out for 'Painting Abstract Nature on Canvas' which is her latest book due to be released this summer.
Watercolour Nature Unleashed
Published by: Search Press