Monday, April 20, 2009

Virtual Sketch Date: Rhododendron Bud

Title: Rhododendron Bud (hot press)
4x4 watercolor, micron pen, Fabriano 90-lb hp
(please click on image to enlarge)

Title: Rhododendron Bud (cold press)
4x4 watercolor, micron pen, Arches 90-lb cp
(please click on image to enlarge)

This month's virtual sketch date reference photo features a vivid, magenta-hued rhododendron bud. I liked it so much, I decided to paint it twice. I am always trying to decide if I prefer hot press or cold press watercolor paper. Hot press is appealing because my micron pen flows smoothly across its surface, whereas cold press paper causes my pen to skip and scratch a bit.

But cold press paper is desirable because it gives such a nice texture to the painting. I'll let you decide: The top version is hot press, and the lower version is cold press. Your thoughts? Thank you!

And be sure to visit the Virtual Sketch Date blog and Flickr group to see all of this month's entries.


Sheila April 20, 2009 at 1:15 PM  

These are beautiful!!! I think you should do more! I love the small formate... perfect for tiny frames or little notecards.

Lori Forester April 21, 2009 at 4:27 AM  

Both are lovely but I think I like the hotpress one better actually.

bluelilac April 21, 2009 at 10:51 PM  

I love your light touch and I like those dotty bits of colour which add a sense of celebration to your painting.
Mary Jane

Sherry April 22, 2009 at 2:59 PM  

Christine, as always, your sketch looks like you have a party at your studio, so light and cheerful.

Debbie April 22, 2009 at 4:42 PM  

I prefer the hot press for this project, especially when doing a smaller painting. Both are lovely.

Paulette April 22, 2009 at 8:38 PM  

I think I like the smooth of the hot press, but both are equally well done and fun looking.

christine April 22, 2009 at 8:54 PM  

Thank you so much to all who took the time to write! I truly value your kind and thoughtful comments.

I think the voting in this informal survey is 100% in favor of the hot press watercolor paper for pen and watercolor wash. I am inclined to agree. Thank you for helping me make up my mind on this issue which I have been pondering for many months.

And yes, Sherry, it does sometimes feel like a party in my studio, albeit a private party where I'm the only one flinging paint! (My husband and sons only pop their heads into say 'hello'). But it sure is fun! :)

Ann April 23, 2009 at 1:15 PM  

Wish I could come join the fun! I agree, the hot press is my preference here too - although both are fantastic!

Carol April 23, 2009 at 6:18 PM  

Both are beautiful! I like the addition of the dots.

Jeanette April 23, 2009 at 6:25 PM  

These are light and airy and lovely. I agree that hotpress really shows off the pen to its best, but both have beautiful qualities to them.

Jennifer Rose April 25, 2009 at 3:11 PM  

very hard to choose which one I like better. both have nice colour and lines, but if I had to choose it would be the hot press because it looks smoother.

Leah April 26, 2009 at 9:00 PM  

so hard to choose! both are fabulous! I think I like the top one just a touch more. Not sure why though.

I've got some rhododendron bushes outside my window and I look forward to their beautiful blooms.

Sydney Harper April 26, 2009 at 9:16 PM  

Both are lovely but I think the hotpress works the best. I have to agree about the party too. The buds look like happy, partying flowers. :)

Ramana KV May 7, 2009 at 6:42 AM  

Looks simple and very charming :)


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