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Charles Peterson's Watercolor
Memory Image Method

How does he do that? This question may be the one asked most often concerning Charles Peterson's Memories collection, Those who have experience using watercolor are often the most perplexed. On a few occasions, gallery owners have even related stories of local artists coming to the conclusion (after the careful inspection of a Peterson image) that it must be done with the use of double exposure photography or computer imagery, because "it simply can not be done with watercolor." Charles Peterson is always amused to hear the same story relived in another corner of the country. "One could argue that it shouldn't be done in watercolor, but it clearly can be done if one is perverse enough." The difficulty lies in the fact that, with watercolor (unlike oil or acrylic paint), the figures can not be painted over the top of a completed composition. To do so would darken and "muddy" the underlying paint. The only other option, then, is to paint the memory images separately from the background -- task that requires so much control of a medium which defies control, that some people would, understandably, think it impossible.
Recognizing that a picture is worth a thousand words, the following photos (along with a brief outline from the artist) document the development of one of Charles Peterson's most popular images, "Recitation". (Recitation was released in 1993 and sold out immediately. it is now available only on the secondary market at a price several times its release price.) ...

Since watercolor is transparent, creating "memory images" involves more thorough planning from the beginning than one would have to undertake with oil paint. In oil you can count on being able to manipulate the composition as you go; you can scrape off, cover up, repaint -- basically, make any change you want. watercolor is unforgiving. Miscalculations or unsatisfactory results mean starting over, so careful planning is paramount. With each "memories" painting, I go through ten basic steps to completion:

Charles Peterson's method for painting the memory images.

Second part of Charles Peterson's method for painting memory images.


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Yes, we do APPRAISALS of prints. However, there is a cost.
The first print is $35.00 and each print after that is $10.00.
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We regret the need to raise our shipping costs.
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