I decided to work up a couple of my sketches into paintings. I used three colours again for this one of the Leeds Liverpool canal at Haskayne. I feel I could make it more dramatic and may well have another go at this one.


I do like the long format and took a sketch I published earlier and narrowed it out and gave the man a dog. He was actually walking along bare chested – but I gave him a red shirt ( I cant stand nudity at such an early hour). Again it was done with three primary colours and again it was of the Leeds Liverpool Canal between Burscough and Parbold.

Other canal scenes  are available on my website:


  1. Were your colours Yellow, Orange and Blue? Its amazing what you can do with a limited palette. Theres a lot of debate whether the primary colours are cyan, magenta, yellow, or red, yellow, blue. I know from experience that cyan, magenta, and yellow will give more of a range than the yellow, blue and red. But it is good to do a slightly narrower colour palette every once and a while. I know with acrylic you can mix colours very evenly but with watercolour I assume they must separate a bit when they are mixed.

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  2. Thanks Shawn. I used a warm red, warm blue and a warm yellow. So they are not dead centre primaries.
    Neither are cyan, magenta and probably the yellow you mention. These are colours they use in printing and silver halide photographic technology. I vaguely remember that these colours are used because of their additive properties ie when they are overlain on each other as if you use the actual primaries there are issues.
    Personally I use a warm and a cool red/yellow/blue, in my watercolours, acrylics and oils ( with black and white in acrilic and oils) so I have the ability to mix most colours from very few. It also helps when trying to remember how you mixed a specific colour – there arent too many possibilities.

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