A picture of a watercolor in process in the Rose Garden. Easel and paper in front of the fountain.

Plein Air Watercolor: Fuente del Faunito Rose Garden 2015

Fuente de Faunito en la Rosaleda Madrid 

Esta fuente española situada en el parque del Retiro de Madrid España se llama Fuente del Faunito. Recuerdo este día perfectamente bien. El jardín estaba lleno de rosas y había visitantes por todos lados, caminando y tomando fotos. El jardín de rosas solía estar abierto a todas horas. Solía ir temprano en la mañana cuando no había nadie alrededor. Ahora tiene una hora de apertura y una de cierre, por lo que es difícil pintar aquí ahora.

A watercolor of a Spainish Rose Garden with a fountain called La Fuente del Faunito. Pink and Red Roses under a cloudy sky.

Fuente del Faunito Rose Garden 2015

This Spanish fountain located in the Retiro park of Madrid Spain is called Fuente del Faunito.  I remember this day perfectly well.  The garden was full of roses and there were visitors everywhere, walking around and taking pictures.  The rose garden used to be open at all hours.  I used to go early in the morning when there wasn’t anybody around.  Now it has an opening and closing hour, so it’s hard to paint here now.

Red Roses in Blue Glass Vase 2015

This blue glass vase is one of my favorite glass works to paint.  I got it at a second-hand store for five dollars.  Maybe the previous owner will see it in a watercolor one day.  In this post, I’m going to show the phases in making Red Roses in Blue Glass Vase.

Starting out lightly

First, I look at what I’m going to paint and think about fitting it in the picture plane. I’m starting out lightly directly with paint.

Light Wash

Here, I continue lightly, making sure everything fits in the picture plane since  I didn’t start with a preliminary drawing.

Painting around the Paper

After I figure out where the model goes on the picture plane, I start building up more color and shape around it, only painting what I see.

Building up Detail

Here I start building up detail around what has already been painted. I don’t re-paint or put more layers where it has already been painted. I just keep on working around the paper to keep balance in check.


At this point, I’m looking for contrasting colors, but still, I’m only painting the colors, shapes and forms that I see.

Finishing up

I’m finishing up here, looking for more contrast so that the glass vase reflected in the mirror doesn’t get lost in the printed material in the background.

Red Roses in Blue Vase 2015

Red Roses in Blue Vase 2015 – Watercolor on Arches 640 GMS – 22″ x 16″ – 56 cm x 58 cm

Model for Red Roses in Blue Vase 2015

Here is the model for Red Roses in Blue Glass Vase 2015