Wax-resist Techniques with Watercolour – Landscapes 29th March

To begin this session, Caroline pointed out that, like watercolours, this technique needs careful planning and forethought. Although wax has been shown before in seascapes, it can also be used in landscapes and skies.

A rocky landscape was outlined, then, working from light to dark:


Mark out the lightest white part with small birthday candles.

Put on a light blue wash, apply more wax “clouds”.

Paint on a darker wash, when the wax and blot effect will begin to show. Continue with a darker was (maybe Cobalt Blue) followed by more wax, then perhaps experiment with Ultramarine, Turquoise or green.


Put on solid amounts of wax and apply a light wash of blue/green. Shade in any reflections from the shoreline.


Starting with the lower slopes, Caroline put on a wash mix of pale green and yellow. Burnt Sienna was used for the upper slopes. Then she covered all the paint in wax, not completely, but with some gaps, followed by an application of browns. For the effect of scree on the mountain sides use raw umber and dark green. Caroline then scattered salt on the wet paint and then rubbed it over with wax.

We all found this demo particularly helpful, having attempted, at one time or another to paint the gravelly surfaces of mountainous landscapes.

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