I have found that watercolor is an extremely unpredictable medium that cannot be entirely taught nor entirely mastered. I therefore try to start out with a humble and innocent approach. I’ve noticed that if I have a preconceived idea of what I want the finished painting to look like the result is invariably a failure.
I like to use good quality equipment – a box of paints (which I prefer in pans.) Italian watercolor paper and most importantly, decent sable brushes. As I usually paint from observation, I map out the drawing in HB pencil and then start applying the paint with a mixture of bravery and caution. First laying down broad simple washes, I gradually add more sharply rendered detail as the washes dry. A watercolor is easily ruined by over-working and I’ve noticed that a spontaneous approach balanced by a certain discipline yields the best results.