Technique and History

The watercolor is a painting technique where water serves as a remedy for melting of colors. The watercolor can be used for coloring the drawings within existing contours, for covering by colors of hatched drawings, for tacking of drawings made in other graphic techniques and for painting without previous drawing.

The watercolor is a technique where base comes to its prominence. The light parts of the painting are softly covered by color and white parts remain uncovered. Due to these features a special kind of luminousness can be achieved by using watercolor. Watercolor colors are mainly of mineral or floral origin. They could be found in round or square plates, in little pots or tubes. Watercolor is done by subtle paintbrushes (narrow and broad ones) made of different kinds of hairs at specially made watercolor paper of different structures. Paper is previously fixed on the drawing board so that painting remains flat after drying process and removing from the board. Watercolors are easily dried and that's why glycerin is sometimes added to the water so that drying process is slowed down. Due to instability of the colors watercolor paintings are not exposed to the intense sun light and are framed without direct contact with the glass.

Watercolor painting demands special skill due to its azure character. Corrections are almost impossible and rinsing is very difficult.

Watercolor is a main painting technique of ancient Egypt. So called Books of Deads were painted by watercolor on papyrus. Starting from 2nd century AD watercolor on silk and paper is in use in China. The greatest affirmation watercolor experienced after the penetration of Budism in 12th century. There are many watercolor painting schools in thirteen century Japan. Watercolor was in use in India, Persia, ancient Greece and Rome. It was also used in early Christian art and through the Byzantine it was widely spread in monasteries across Europe.

It was neglected and overshadowed by other painting techniques for so long and than is spread again in eighteen century England where was recognized as an independent painting technique. The first known watercolors in England were done by J. White. Some of the painters that made watercolor famous (and advanced as a technique) were H. Holbein, E. Norgate, Vaclav Hollar, Francis Place, Samule Scott, W. Marlow, Sawrey Gilpin, George Robertson, Paul and Thomas Sandby, Th. Gainsborough, Alexander Cozens, John, Robert Cozens (Alexander gave it its luminousness and softness).

One of the most important nineteen century watercolor artists was J.W.Mallord Turner. Eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries gave the great number of watercolor artists in France, Italy, Austria, Germany, Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, Russia and Poland.

They Said About Watercolor

"The watercolor demands big confidence and quick work. It specially doesn't stand corrections, erasing and adding. It also doesn't stand the fatigue of material. I consider it for the most valuable painting."

Pedja Milosavljevic

"The future of watercolor? It should be discovered as a possibility of expression. It should be demonstrated that there are works of serious artists, works that are rarely displayed not because they are underestimated but because they are often forgotten in this overall rush, but works that kept what watercolor always had as its most spiritual feature: freshness and dignified power of a subtle medium which is still capable to give an artistic illusion the value of a reality."

Zoran Pavlovic

"At the end watercolor must look simple, plain, fresh, to be like a breeze, like a breath of air, 'cause more than any other painting technique it reveals the soul of the artist. The watercolor is a poem, a haiku poem."

Zdravko Mandic

"The watercolor is a water drop in which we discover the world of paper, the color pigment, a hand holding painting brush, the eye and the mind of sun light.
The painter is on his own with watercolor. The water drop of watercolor – that's me."

Todor Stevanovic

"The paint in watercolor means to draw in color. Some likes broad, some thin and shy lines. Some likes pure dreaming. The watercolor is really one powerful poetic force that, it could be said, originates from chaos and comes into this world in its full clarity as a beautiful sonata of crystal tones and striking melody."

Vlastimir Nikolic

"The watercolor is not only a technique. It is a way of visual thinking and form of art work existence."

Sreto Bosnjak