Try, try again. That was my motto last night. As I began to apply the polyurethane coat to my new mobiles from the previous days post, I was faced with a very unfortunate problem. The paint began to lift off the paper. Normally, when I have a mobile with a more mottled look or other paint design, this problem does not present itself because it adds to the design. But, when I am working a beautiful graduated watercolor wash, lifting the paint in miscellaneous spots is not something that goes well. My former paper manufacturer stopped making the type of paper I have been using in the past. Can you believe it! So I have spent the past year making mobiles with a certain type of 140lb paper only to find that I needed to find a different source.
A few of the things that watercolorists look for in a paper is the ability to both retain their color on the paper when it soaks into the paper and also lift color in places after it has dried. Some paper mfgs put additives in their paper to make the lifting process easier for the artist. For my work with kinetic mobiles created with watercolor paintings, I don't want my paint designs to lift off the paper when I am applying a sealer to it (I just want it all, don't I). I have spent at least $100.00 on watercolor paper in recent months and thought that I had found two perfect papers for my work, Fluid Paper (inexpensive) and Lanaquarelle (a little pricey) (of course Arches and Aquarella would work but not cost effective). I now know that only one of those choices, Lanaquarelle, will work for a graduated wash without lifting as much color as the other. I can't always use permanent watercolors, especially when customers request custom color schemes on their mobiles. And some have asked why I don't just use acrylics..... because they don't have the beauty of watercolors and I like almost everything about watercolors.... the effects you can produce with that medium, the ease of cleanup, the translucence, and many many more things.
So, I had to start over from scratch on my two orders. I spent last evening repainting the panels but luckily, this also gave me the opportunity to paint an exact color match the photos I took of the panels in previous nights.
Lesson learned.... Test your new materials and mediums throughly before you have to work on a customer's order. !!! Wisdom.... does anyone have a program for that.... instant wisdom! What a concept! Where is a windows 7 developer when I need one!