Don’t throw your ‘failed’ watercolour paintings in the bin — recycle them!
Jan T’s top 10 ways to recycle watercolour paintings
There are many ways to recycle a painting that you are dissatisfied with, including:
- Tear it into pieces for collage.
- Alternatively, find an area you do like and crop it into a smaller painting.
- Glue painted rice paper to mask the poorly executed areas.
Note the ragged edged pieces of tan, and lilac rice paper in the background on this recycled watercolour painting.
- Paint over some parts with gouache. Although John Lovett does not paint gouache on his paintings for this reason, I was inspired to fix one of mine this way with white opaque watercolour paint, and then it sold.
- Paint over some/all of it with opaque paints.
- Draw/write with watercolour pens on top of the painting. This painting was also successfully recycled this way.
- Cut into smaller ‘paintings’ to glue to greeting card blanks.
- Another technique to try is to journal on top with markers and use the piece in your art journal.
- Use the back to start over.
- Stencil over the parts you dislike with very diluted acrylic paint.
New art from discarded paintings
As a result of rescuing your binned artwork, you will be surprised how much you like the recycled watercolour paintings, and your friends will love receiving art on the cards you send.