Can You Feel the Color?

November Apples (watercolor, 8 x 11)

What I love about watercolor is that it can be used in so many ways?and I’ll often use all those ways in one painting. If I use thin, transparent washes in an area, for example, I can get nuances of colors and temperatures as I go. On the other hand, if I use the paint straight out of the tube, I can move the colors around and push them to the point of being so thick the light barely comes back through.

I’d have to say my favorite way to paint is thickly and directly. I like to move the paint around. I even like the sound of my brush, loaded with paint, moving across my 140-lb., cold-pressed paper. It’s a very tactile sensation. The paint has the consistency of syrup or finger paints, and sometimes I even put my fingers into it!

I also think of my brush as my fingertip. I try to put my entire body into the motion of my arm, fingers and brush. I advise my students to work toward shortening the distance between their eyes and their hand. Painting is a passion that comes from the mind and spirit and goes down on the paper. The goal should be to get your mind right on the paper, at the point of creativity.

After years of teaching workshops in the United States and abroad, Henrry Fukuhara is now semi-retired in Santa Monica, California, where he continues to paint and teach. His work can be seen in museums and in private collections around the world. His paintings have been featured in numerous one-man and group shows, and have been featured in several books.

You may also like these articles: