Double trouble watercolour paintings

Often, when I paint two similar watercolour paintings of the same subject, I find myself caught in a pros and cons crossfire between the two paintings. Sometimes, the decision between which of the two I prefer is quite cut and dried. On other occassions, it can be more challenging, yet I always feel compelled to try to make a choice.

Here’s the first version I did of this Tokyo side street:

Tokyo side street (quarter imperial)

This is a quarter imperial sheet and I enjoyed painting it so much that I thought I’d like to do a larger version, just for fun. Here’s my second effort:

Tokyo side street (half imperial)

And, for ease of comparison, the two side by side: first to give a sense of scale/proportion…

… and secondly for a more direct compare and contrast:

I like the warmth and lightness of the first, smaller painting, but prefer elements such as the car and some of the dry brush strokes of the second more. I can’t deny that it’s quite a nice problem to have; two paintings of the same scene that I like sufficiently well that it’s hard to choose between them. I think they both stand up in their own right and it’s only by looking at them side by side that there’s a natural tendency to compare and contrast.

I suppose it’s also quite nice that I don’t actually have to choose between them!

I’d love to hear what others think about these two. Do you prefer the smaller v the larger, the lighter v the darker?

Follow John Haywood Watercolours on WordPress.com

Thoughts on Double trouble watercolour paintings

10 thoughts on “Double trouble watercolour paintings”

    1. Thanks so much for this Rukshana, and yes, and I can totally understand this. I think I also like this one for the same reasons, yet conversely like the larger one because the contrast is so much stronger! I think I’m just going to have to settle for liking them both, which is no bad thing!

    1. Hi David and thanks for this and I think that’s exactly where I am with these two – I like them both pretty equally for the same reasons that you’ve identified.

    1. Hi David and many thansk for thinking of me on reading this. I really enjoyed the article and am familiar with his work. It reminds me a lot of the work of Ken Howard (worth a look if you’re not already familiar) in the gradual building up and layering of washes. He’s certainly a much more patient painter than I’ll ever be! I think most of my paintings are done and dusted in the time it takes him to get his final drawing transferred onto his paper (this isn’t a value judgement of course, just interesting to note the differences in our approaches!). I wasn’t signed up to receive those emails from Daniel Smith but I am now so thanks very much for bringing it to my attention, much appreciated!

  1. Hi John,
    Yes I prefer the 1st one too. It seems brighter and fresher than the other one…nice paintings! 🤗

  2. Pingback: Bad back watercolour painting!

I'd love to hear any thoughts you have about this

Follow John Haywood Watercolours on WordPress.com

Recent posts

Shopping Cart

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.

%d bloggers like this: