Plein-air pen and wash on paper

Winter Activities.


The weather at this time of the year makes it difficult for outdoor sketching. It is an opportunity to work inside and to explore or brush-up on essential techniques or methods from a watercolor book or get new ideas from a video, or to take on a project and make a picture at the request of someone.

I have several of these on the go for all of the above. The most interesting one that keeps me curremtly busy is to make a watercolor picture of this teal colored building (again) on a half sheet of paper (about 15″x22″, way out of my comfort zone).

The Teal Building on the Corner

The Teal Building on the Corner, first edition on a quarter sheet.

Instead of wasting a lot of expensive paper all at once,  I start out on a quarter sheet, using both sides of it. I select different views of this building from a variety of photographs that have been cropped. I used to print these in black&white and draw a grid over it to transfer the image, however, there are “aps” available that will overlay a grid on your photograph using your laptop or tablet. This will allow you to transfer the image directly from a digital medium to your paper, including the necessary editing in the process.

This time I used a pencil and a ruler to make the drawing carefully and more precisely instead of freehand sketching directly in ink, as is my habit when working outside. After applying the watercolors, I used a dip pen with a brown ink to add some lines; could not resist.

The perspective of the roofline looks too strong. Camera lenses are made to perform many tasks simultaneously, sometimes resulting in minor distortions. I need to adjust this somewhat in the next edition.








Author: John Hofman

my email is Website:

2 thoughts on “Winter Activities.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s