GUEST ARTIST: “Travels With A Brush, An Odyssey In Watercolours” by Brian Tucker

Brian Tucker Watercolour Painting Boats Water Landscape

My name is Brian Tucker, and I live in Kent in the United Kingdom. I have been painting watercolours for many years, but since retiring I have been lucky enough to have had the time paint a lot more and that has, and still does give me a lot of pleasure.

It all started on a beach in Cornwall over 30 years ago when after building the sandcastles ,swimming, and playing games I had some quiet time while our children played and so I bought myself a little sketch book. The following year, I bought some watercolours and I was off on a wonderful journey! I love painting in two main styles: pen and wash, and larger more formal watercolours.

I worked in Aerospace for nearly 40 years on projects like Concorde, Boeing 747, 777 and many others. I really enjoyed my work and I travelled very extensively, especially to the United States. Wherever I would travel, I took the sketch book, and some paints and brushes, and in quiet moments produced some sketches and took photos to be used for future artworks.

On holidays I would always send email postcards, although early on they were real postcards painted and posted. People did and still do like to get them. It’s something I would really recommend. Some friends have even collected them!

About ten years ago, I decided to start thinking of my watercolours as records of our travels and then the title “Travels With A Brush” originated. But what to do with all these watercolours and sketchbooks?

One day, I came across the idea of a blog. I had not been aware of them, so decided to have a go. It turned out easier than I thought using WordPress, which I still use as it works so well. I always had taken photos of every watercolour and that helped me get started with the blog which has and is still all about our worldwide travels. So documenting our travels and writing a few words to go with the watercolours has become a very regular thing for me and given me a “gallery” for my artworks.

As many paintings were away from my home studio, I used and still do Arches glue edged blocks of watercolour paper, mostly 140 lb in various sizes, in NOT and Rough textures. They are expensive but are really nice to work on and don’t need stretching.

I prefer Daniel Smith and other high quality watercolour paints and use small folding palettes from Kem Bromley where I buy most of my materials. For the pen and wash sketches, I like to use Micron pens in various thicknesses and I really like Escoda watercolour brushes, mainly synthetic as they hold their point very well. I enjoy using the travel brushes as well as large calligraphy style brushes for larger areas.

Urban Sketching Watercolour Sketchbook Spread Pages Brian Tucker

San Gimignano

I have been lucky enough to go on two watercolour courses in the past few years. One with Victoria Predshenko, a brilliant Russian painter with a very unique style, and the second one with Herman Pekel. Herman is a great Australian painter and watercolourist whose work is amazing. He is also a great teacher. That was in Norfolk, where the coast is great and the big, big skies and great scenery are just crying out to be painted.

Misty Morning In Norfolk Watercolor by Brian Tucker

Misty Morning In Norfolk

I get great pleasure if someone would like one of my artworks as a reminder of a favourite place or holiday and so I do sell a few paintings using Artfinder and also directly. This is very satisfying as it also funds all of my materials too!

Cottages in Donegal in Ireland Watercolour scene

Cottages in Donegal in Ireland

I have learnt not to be shy about putting work online and letting people see it. I know I am not a great watercolour painter, but even so, people are very interested in this medium and the works I produce. It’s been a good lesson to learn.

I very much admire watercolour painters of the past such as Edward Seago and Edmund Wesson, as well as contemporary ones like Alvarado Castagnet, Herman Pekel, and Joseph Zbukvic. We all have so much to learn from them and others!

But the really big thing is to enjoy your time painting, get lost and absorbed by it and be overjoyed when that mistake with the paint turns out to be a magical mark! Enjoy watercolour, I really do!

Brian Tucker

Recommended5 recommendationsPublished in Featured Artists
  1. Sandra Strait 2 years ago

    What a treasure all your paintings are. They have a quality that you just can’t get with photographs. Thank you for sharing your artistic journey with us.

  2. Rhoda 2 years ago

    Just looked through your website and bookmarked it. Wonderful water color captures!rs

  3. Manish Rajguru 2 years ago

    Hi Brian, Thank you for sharing here about your inspirations, journey. Your work is beautiful, fresh and inspiring. what is wonderful about your journey is your persistence and staying true to your passion. Wish you all the best for your future projects and art journey.

  4. Zertab Quaderi 2 years ago

    Such wonderful paintings!

  5. Karen Fortier 2 years ago

    Thanks so much for sharing your story and your beautiful art. Your supply list sounds very close to what I use.

  6. Sharon Nolfi 2 years ago

    Thanks for sharing your lovely work! “Misty Morning In Norfolk” is especially beautiful.

  7. Joyce Lipman 2 years ago

    All of your watercolors are wonderful and hearing your journey is inspiring! Thank you!

  8. Paul 2 years ago

    Brian, Thank you for sharing. I like the colors you use in your paintings.

  9. Robert Coleman 2 years ago

    Wonderful sketchbooks which serve as photo albums of your trips. But they are more than just a record of what you saw, they also hold your emotional response to what you saw. That’s the best part of a traveling sketchbook, you’ll rekindle how you felt about each scene! I love it!

  10. Stephen Booth 2 years ago

    Thankyou for sharing your journey with is,your paintings are inspiring

  11. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 2 years ago

    Brian, I love your assured, delicate hand with a brush. Feels like I’m listening to the landscapes breathing. Love your attitude about mistakes being magical.

  12. Lin Powell 2 years ago

    I really love your style. Thank you for sharing your paintings and your story.

  13. Sashi Sash 2 years ago

    I love your art style 💖💖 Your paintings are truly inspiring.

  14. Molly M 2 years ago

    Hi Brian, love your journal/sketchbook style pieces as I’ve traveled a lot and would love to create watercolor memories as you have. Your work is wonderful. Thanks for sharing your story and your art.

  15. Maureen James 2 years ago

    Hi Brian just been through your paintings, of course have seen some before but seeing them like this is lovely.

  16. John Andrews 2 years ago

    Hi Brian looks like you have been busy in lockdown great paintings hope your back gets better

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