Hi All Artists Hearts,
In this second stage of 'The Trading Post' we will share a bit later about this unique and charming country store, but first let's get started with the beginning washes of color for the leaves, store doors, a bit of the flower pot rim and dark soil in-between the stones.

The Trading Post Watercolor by Jan Howlett May 2014

The starting point on this complex sketch was fairly daunting so I chose the more simple and obvious larger leaves of the Kale to begin my first few under washes to help me get my bearings. Start simple and grow into the more difficult areas when faced with something daunting, or if you feel your task has become overwhelming. Baby steps at first lead to bigger, more confident steps along the way.

It was exciting to start setting up my palette choosing the various blues that most closely resembled the colors in my resource photo taken in the early Fall of 2009 with a warm mid afternoon sun.  Although I will be custom mixing many of the colors, I will also be using tube colors from some of my favorite brands as seen below.

How beautiful to instantly see the beginning effects using even one layer of color from part of my Windsor & Newton collection including Cerulean Blue (I still have a little of the original pigment from years ago! :>), Phthalo Blue, Prussian Blue, Cobalt Blue, Ultramarine Blue, Indigo, Payne's Grey Bluish,
a touch of Antwerp Blue, Alizarin Crimson Permanent, Violet, Quin Rose, and a few prized Schmincke colors of Brilliant Purple, Aureolin Modern Yellow and Indian Yellow Translucent Orange, Magenta and Purple Magenta, all coming together. I will also be using some Holbein dark greens (Compose Green & Shadow Green) as well as my regular green mixes.

I couldn't wait to get started on the white
garden stones as well and started with the soil in between the stones to see the effect I would get by mixing the earth tones using Burnt Sienna, Raw Umber, Sepia and Van Dyke Brown with some of the blues.

My Brushes: For this painting I'm using a No.2 & 6 Billy Showell pure Kolinsky Sable, and my Silver Black Velvet brushes, a blend of natural squirrel hair and black synthetic filament, in a No. 8 Round and a 3/4" Oval. Both types of these natural hair brushes give me excellent coverage, control of paint flow, providing beautiful crisp and soft edges.

My Scrubbers: DaVinci scrubber No.4, (part of Susan Harrison-Tustain's Signature Set) a more gentle brush for flat areas on the Kale leaves when needed, a tough Fritch No. 6 for some of the tiny white dots characteristically seen on Kale leaves, and finally an Imagia 1/4" firm fabric paint brush as a thin edged scrubber for the circular rim highlights on the Cream Separator and possibly the flower pot.

That is it for the tools and paints that I will be using for the most part.  Our next post will see good progress in this piece along with perhaps a few notes on any changes or adjustments that were needed.

If you ever get a chance to visit Port Perry, Ontario don't miss the Trading Post Quality Foods Farmer's Market.  You will not be disappointed. See  http://www.tradingpostqualityfoods.com/

It boasts of 7,000 square feet of charm and yummy foods and a petting zoo for the old and young alike.  Known for being the largest selection of gourmet & specialty foods fresh and frozen in the area since 2002. Truly a refreshing rest stop on a long trip when you need to stretch your legs or just browse the gift shop.

Until next time stay inspired, paint what you love and visit a country Farm market near you for some great ideas. And while you are there take some photos or do some thumbnail sketches for your next painting. :>)