Unless you're using really good watercolor paper (140 lb. Arches comes to
mind) I wouldn't "stretch." It takes up a lot of time! You may want to
show students how to tape off the edges of paper using masonite panels as
base (I use the same border measurement on top and sides, with 1/2"
additional measurement on base of painting) and, if they're going to do
wet-on-wet or really large scale washes, to mist the area lightly,
complete that part of the painting, and dry with a blow dryer. That seems
to cut out most of the bulking.
For gradated washes I demo making a low key mixture of paint (lots of
paint, little water). I take a 3/4 inch Taklon flat and swipe across a
section of paper. I then add a little more water to the paint and "step"
half-way down the brush stroke with a lighter key stroke; add a little more
water to the paint and again step halfway down. Each step down the paint
gets lighter, but you're working wet enough so it just blends. Make sure
kids don't tilt boards during this process or they'll get "blooms."
If you've got other question, please e-mail off list. I teach watercolor
as part of my seventh grade curriculum.
Can anyone give me some tips on how teach water color techniques to
junior high. Not a medium I have a lot of experience with and I could use a
run down of the basics. Like how to stretch paper and how to do a graded
wash so that students can be successful.
thanks in advance,
pj gelinas jhs