Monday, June 1, 2009

Balloons on Yupo

Today I demonstrated two paintings for a "beginning techniques" exercise in the "Watercolor on Yupo" workshop. Yupo is a manufactured synthetic paper made from recycled plastic. The surface is nonabsorbent and so requires some variation from traditional watercolor methods. Watercolor painted on yupo creates unusual "fluid" effects. For beginning techniques, we practiced various methods for applying the paint on yupo, subtracting paint, and creating cascading variegated and flat washes. To see a few more of my paintings on yupo, visit my website gallery.


Lynne Grossman said...

Hi Ariel,

These paintings are colorful and definitely show that unusual fluid effect you speak of here. The balloons are cheerful. Just put me on one and float me away! :D I've not tried Yupo paper, but have wanted to ever since I noticed it's a new support. I bet your students enjoyed the workshop!

ariel freeman said...

We had a great time in the workshop...more to come. Many of the students had taken other yupo classes, so I learned a few tips from them as well. Yupo seems to really "fit" certain styles for creative expression. And once you get started with it... there are so many new possibilities. Thanks for your comments Lynne!

Milé Murtanovski said...


Great stuff! I've been to your website gallery and I really like your "Lily Trio". Nice contrast.

I'm just beginning my explorations on Yupo and it's great to see other artists working on this surface.

I simply work flat, not taping the paper down so that I can redirect the paint as needed/desired. Although I begin with a pretty tight drawing, my approach to painting on Yupo is very chaotic (compared to my watercolours on regular paper), as I try to match the unpredictability of the surface, and there's a lot of spattering of paint and clear water.

You can see a few of my Yupo watercolours here:

Experimentation is key with this surface. Keep it up!