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Watercolour Drawing

Watercolor painting is a technique that uses paint pigments and a water-based solution. It is popular thanks to its blurred, hazy effect which can't be obtained through other binding elements, such as egg or oil. Gouache is also a watercolour medium but it is noticeably more adhesive and opaque. Watercolor usually takes shape thanks to a faint pencil outline, drawn onto the paper before the paint is applied.

One of the other advantages for watercolor artists is that they can work quickly, using their time efficiently. Pigments spread out across the canvas in a rather unusual way, becoming more concentrated around the edges. This gives watercolor prints the transparent quality they're known for, enhancing the paper's luminosity. 

There are several key techniques to watercolor painting, the first of which is called the dry-on-wet technique. For this method, the painting's base is laid out in watercolor and then elaborated on with fewer pigments. There is also the wet-on-wet technique, which involves wetting the paper before the paint is applied in order to achieve greater color saturation. 

Watercolor is also easily erasable! Artists working with this medium can rework their watercolor print's by diluting the paint with water again, this time directly on the paper. These are just a few of the reasons for why watercolor is a preferred method for plein-air painters, who set out to represent landscapes and the sky in situ... 

Artworks using watercolor are typically carried out on paper, also contributing to why watercolor drawing is so popular. The weight of the paper, its resistance to moisture, the paper's color… all of these aspects play a decisive role in creating the painting's final effect. The type of paper typically used for this artistic technique is made from linen cloths, wood or straw.

Certain artists, such as the illustrator Oga Kazuo from Studio Ghibli, work with wet paper spread across varnished wood, while others prefer to use plexiglas. The result is that the water takes longer to evaporate, producing 
a very different color effect.


Although water-based paints date back to cave painting, it wasn't until the Renaissance that watercolor painting became commonplace. Art history tells us that oil painting was the most commonly used technique at the time, yet Northern European masters such as Albrecht Dürer chose watercolor to depict landscapes.  Venetian painters also gravitated towards this medium for their representations of the city's sublime canals. What could be a better way to portray water than with water-based paints?

Landscape painting is the most popular genre among watercolor artists. Claude Lorrain is an example of this from the 17th century, to be followed by William Turner, Samuel Palmer and Richard Bonington in the 19th century. Many artists chose watercolor painting to express the shades of the sky, ocean waves and expansive fields. In the 20th century, artists such as Vassily Kandinsky, Jean Bazaine and Raoul Dufy elaborated different abstract, watercolor techniques.

Discover Artsper's collection of watercolor paintings, offering some of the most renowned artists such as 
Paul JenkinsWalasse TingVittoretti and Philippe Pasqua. If you're curious for more, head over to our unique selection of Chinese ink drawings, charcoal portraits or pastel and chalk portraits...

Collector’s Guide: Collecting Drawings

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Fernand Louis Gottlob, Commérages, Fine Art Drawings

Fernand Louis Gottlob

Commérages, 1901
45.5 x 31 x 0.3 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$825

Noël Granger, Le coq Marcel, Fine Art Drawings

Noël Granger

Le coq Marcel, 2021
35 x 25 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$132

Philippe  Hiquily, Sans titre, Fine Art Drawings

Philippe Hiquily

Sans titre, 1961
40 x 28 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$10,769

Nora Ampova, Sunset at UBA, Fine Art Drawings

Nora Ampova

Sunset at UBA, 2020
20 x 20 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$156

Raphaël Federici (ParisSketchCulture), Dessin, Fine Art Drawings

Raphaël Federici (ParisSketchCulture)

Dessin, 2019
37 x 27 x 0.5 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$455

Camille Hilaire, Vignes en Provence, Fine Art Drawings

Camille Hilaire

Vignes en Provence, 1955
47 x 60.5 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,675

Olivier  Masmonteil, Sans titre #17, Fine Art Drawings

Olivier Masmonteil

Sans titre #17, 2020
44 x 36 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,436

Martin Bradley, Mice and strawberries, Fine Art Drawings

Martin Bradley

Mice and strawberries, 2002
41 x 48 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$2,094

Ghislaine Ferreira, Corbeau 8, Fine Art Drawings

Ghislaine Ferreira

Corbeau 8, 2019
76 x 57 x 1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$897

Barbara Dyoniziak-Stuss, A cottage, Fine Art Drawings

Barbara Dyoniziak-Stuss

A cottage, 1994
49 x 59 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$538

Vincent Gicquel, Sans titre, Fine Art Drawings

Vincent Gicquel

Sans titre, 2018
60 x 42 x 0.01 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$2,273

André Bielen, Synopsie 0561, Fine Art Drawings

André Bielen

Synopsie 0561, 2015
73 x 56 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$808 $897

Chrystèle Saint-Amaux, Saynète 32 - Se Souvenir du temps qui passe, Fine Art Drawings

Chrystèle Saint-Amaux

Saynète 32 - Se Souvenir du temps qui passe, 2016
41 x 61 x 0.5 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$718

Nadéra Benmansour, Paris, place de Diaghilev, Fine Art Drawings

Nadéra Benmansour

Paris, place de Diaghilev, 2016
30 x 30 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$313

Henri Fehr, Portrait de femme, Fine Art Drawings

Henri Fehr

Portrait de femme, 1902
27 x 20 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$462

Manuel Santelices, Haughton Hall, Fine Art Drawings

Manuel Santelices

Haughton Hall, 2020
30.5 x 22.9 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$800

Wojciech Sadley, Ichtios, Fine Art Drawings

Wojciech Sadley

Ichtios, 2000
38 x 53 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,795

Leszek Rózga, Crete - an icon, Fine Art Drawings

Leszek Rózga

Crete - an icon, 2008
27 x 20 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,017

Georges Rousse, Shodoshima, Fine Art Drawings

Georges Rousse

Shodoshima, 2018
13 x 21 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$3,231

Our recommendations Pauline Guerrier, Oeuvre sur papier ancien, Fine Art Drawings

Pauline Guerrier

Oeuvre sur papier ancien, 2020
49 x 36 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$718

Piotr Kamieniarz, Karnawal III, Fine Art Drawings

Piotr Kamieniarz

Karnawal III, 2020
52 x 70 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,316

Hanna Bakula, Some Turkish, again!, Fine Art Drawings

Hanna Bakula

Some Turkish, again!, 2018
30 x 21 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$957

Stephen and Lorna Kirin, Jacob's Ladder, Fine Art Drawings

Stephen and Lorna Kirin

Jacob's Ladder, 2018
58 x 47 x 1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,254

Carmen Selma, L'entrée pour les garçons, Fine Art Drawings

Carmen Selma

L'entrée pour les garçons, 2018
29.5 x 40 x 0.2 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$571

Jérôme Bouscarat, L'Hydre de Lerne, Fine Art Drawings

Jérôme Bouscarat

L'Hydre de Lerne, 2019
40 x 30 x 0.5 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$517

Markus Lüpertz, Vision de Poussin, Fine Art Drawings

Markus Lüpertz

Vision de Poussin, 2012
70 x 94 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$9,154

Thierry  Lagalla, Ding an sich... dong, Fine Art Drawings

Thierry Lagalla

Ding an sich... dong, 2017
34.8 x 26.3 x 1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,436

Our recommendations Nicolas Rubinstein, Mickey is also a rat, Fine Art Drawings

Nicolas Rubinstein

Mickey is also a rat, 2017
24 x 32 x 0.01 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,795

Mariusz Szalajdewicz, The Ksiaz Castle, Fine Art Drawings

Mariusz Szalajdewicz

The Ksiaz Castle, 2012
29 x 37 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$239

Suoyuan Wang, Echo 4, Fine Art Drawings

Suoyuan Wang

Echo 4, 2018
65 x 50 x 1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$838

Hyacinthe Ouattara, Cartographies Humaines, Fine Art Drawings

Hyacinthe Ouattara

Cartographies Humaines, 2018
32.5 x 46.5 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,735

Yves Willaert, Sans titre, Fine Art Drawings

Yves Willaert

Sans titre, 2018
50 x 40 x 1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$646

Mister Pee, Parade nuptiale, Fine Art Drawings

Mister Pee

Parade nuptiale, 2019
40 x 30 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$479

Corneille, L'Aube tardive, Fine Art Drawings

Corneille

L'Aube tardive, 1958
50 x 65 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$8,137

Tarek, Le sage, Fine Art Drawings

Tarek

Le sage, 2020
40.5 x 29.5 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$419

Nadama, Sans titre, Fine Art Drawings

Nadama

Sans titre, 2018
70 x 50 x 2 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$933

Jazzu, Folies Tendres, Fine Art Drawings

Jazzu

Folies Tendres, 2020
29.7 x 21 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$299

Our recommendations JP Malot, Yo! Mickey Pow & Arrows!, Fine Art Drawings

JP Malot

Yo! Mickey Pow & Arrows!, 2018
70 x 50 x 1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,316

Etienne Quesnay, People face I, Fine Art Drawings

Etienne Quesnay

People face I, 2021
31 x 24 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$479

Hossein Borojeni, De Lignes en Courbes, Fine Art Drawings

Hossein Borojeni

De Lignes en Courbes, 2018
30 x 21 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$622

Fabien Renault, Les bouées, Fine Art Drawings

Fabien Renault

Les bouées, 2018
32 x 62 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$239

Our recommendations Juan Uslé, En Benissa (12), Fine Art Drawings

Juan Uslé

En Benissa (12), 2018
30.5 x 23 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$5,384

Our recommendations Nicola Simbari, The Girl, Fine Art Drawings

Nicola Simbari

The Girl, 1960
30 x 23 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$897

Priscilla Beccari, Le chien et la jupe jaune, Fine Art Drawings

Priscilla Beccari

Le chien et la jupe jaune, 2015
155 x 170 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$3,590

Lantomo, Snow 1 - Darkness Series, Fine Art Drawings

Lantomo

Snow 1 - Darkness Series, 2019
70 x 50 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$2,034

Marc Prat, Nexus papel III, Fine Art Drawings

Marc Prat

Nexus papel III, 2013
100 x 160 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$897

Our recommendations Gottfried Salzmann, Reflet New York, Fine Art Drawings

Gottfried Salzmann

Reflet New York, 2013
30 x 47 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$4,427

Igor Souza, Untitled, Fine Art Drawings

Igor Souza

Untitled, 2015
42 x 30 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$778

Anastasia Kurakina, Portrait, Fine Art Drawings

Anastasia Kurakina

Portrait, 2018
24 x 27 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$419

Pichi & Avo, IMP Gaivs Jvlius Caesar, Fine Art Drawings

Pichi & Avo

IMP Gaivs Jvlius Caesar, 2017
61 x 64 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,556

Viktoria Ganhao, Limitations, Fine Art Drawings

Viktoria Ganhao

Limitations, 2021
14.8 x 21 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$96

Leo Guida, Geometrical Wood, Fine Art Drawings

Leo Guida

Geometrical Wood, 1970
46 x 31 x 0.2 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$574

Mino Maccari, Tennis Player, Fine Art Drawings

Mino Maccari

Tennis Player, 1960
26.1 x 34.2 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$718

Minako Asakura, Jewel Tree - Small, Fine Art Drawings

Minako Asakura

Jewel Tree - Small, 2018
60.6 x 50 x 4 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,556

Léon Zack, Composition abstraite 5, Fine Art Drawings

Léon Zack

Composition abstraite 5, 1972
18 x 12 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,197

Our recommendations Mau Mau, Mermaid, Fine Art Drawings

Mau Mau

Mermaid, 2015
56 x 76 x 1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,077

Romano Zanotti, Développement à partir du carré et de ses actions, Fine Art Drawings

Romano Zanotti

Développement à partir du carré et de ses actions, 1978
65 x 50 x 0.2 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,436

Dwight Baird, Central Park Lunch, Fine Art Drawings

Dwight Baird

Central Park Lunch, 1998
20.3 x 27.9 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$450

Sam Francis, Yea, Fine Art Drawings

Sam Francis

Yea, 1989
21 x 27 x 1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$26,324

Paul Wadsworth, Like Swimming In A Quarry, Fine Art Drawings

Paul Wadsworth

Like Swimming In A Quarry, 2016
86.4 x 116.8 x 5.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,795

Lei Saito, Aventure, Fine Art Drawings

Lei Saito

Aventure, 2018
16.5 x 25 x 1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$479

Gabriel Monte, In Love, Fine Art Drawings

Gabriel Monte

In Love, 2021
30 x 22.5 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$203

Our recommendations Kamsar Ohanyan, Sincerity, Fine Art Drawings

Kamsar Ohanyan

Sincerity, 2018
50 x 40 x 0.1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$479

Roxane Borujerdi, Sans titre, Fine Art Drawings

Roxane Borujerdi

Sans titre, 2020
26 x 18 x 1 cm
Fine Art Drawings

$1,137

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