Watermill painting tutor Tim Wilmot


Tim Wilmot

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Painting by watermill tutor Tim Wilmot

City gate, Ancona, Italy

Watercolour: 15in x 11in

This was a good exercise in many watercolour techniques: (1) the initial wash and leaving out part of the road surface by painting with the side of a mop brush; (2) wet in wet areas in the shadows; (3) softening edges with a brush and clear water (the foreground shadow); (4) negative painting around figures and the car; and (5) using a bit of body paint for figure details and the no entry sign

Painting by Tim Wilmot a tutor at the watermill in Italy

Corsa della Republica, Fabriano, Italy

Watercolour: 15in x 11in

I was going for two focal points here - the first one with the guy on the left in light clothing with the dark arch behind and then the angular shadow on the right hand red building. For the shadows in the bottom right hand corner I dropped in clear water while the wash was still damp, and added in thicker, darker paint for the deeper shadows by the car and the figure.

Painting tutor at the watermill in Italy Tim Wilmot

Tree in blossom, market square, St Foy la Grande, South-west France

Watercolour: 15in x 11in

The market square is a mixture of stone buildings, some more recent and some older buildings, maybe 500 years old, with exterior timber supports. I decided to have a row of cars on the right and then connect the foreground shadows to them.  A more elaborate option might be to make the sun higher the shadows shorter, have the figures highlighted and then their shadows going over to the cars. Maybe the next one...

Painting tutor Tim Wilmot at the watermill in Italy

Two houses in Provence

Watercolour: 22in x 15in

A couple of country houses in Provence. This was a demonstration painting for a tutorial session run recently and based on a reference photo. The trick I think with French country houses is to not make them too neat with lines and colours.  Dirty them up a bit and put in some bright blue shutters. The foreground had to have a bit of texture, so different tones of green were applied. I regularly do not use any 'green' paint, but prefer to mix my own - of course a bright yellow and ultramarine blue, or cobalt turquoise and yellow ochre makes a duller green

Course dates

Course Completed



Tim Wilmot is an artist from Bristol in the South-west of the UK, specialising in vibrant watercolours, using tone and light to bring out the best in the medium. Tim, self-taught, paints in a loose, impressionistic style and, while having dabbled with portraits and still lifes, he is inexorably drawn to landscapes. He says: “I'm an outdoor person rather than an indoor person. For many years I’ve taken a sketch book on my travels and I quickly scribble scenes in a shorthand sort of way. Then, returning home, I recreate those memories with paint and brush. Watercolour is also an ideal medium for those quick impressions when you're limited in time.”

What about Tim’s style? He says: “I have been influenced by the styles of so many great watercolour artists, such as John Pike, Edward Wesson, John Yardley, Alvaro Castagnet and Joseph Zbukvic, but I have developed my own style over the years.  When I look at other artists your aim is not to copy their style but to take elements of how they go about things and ‘make it your own’.  So, use methods and techniques that you are comfortable with to deploy and use: there's no sense using masking fluid if you never get on with thae stuff!”

As well as an exciting artist, Tim is also an inspiring teacher. He demonstrates regularly in England and, amazingly has more than 15,000 followers of his demonstrations on YouTube. He is also a popular online painting tutor. He loves personal interaction with his students: “Every artist loves a bit or critique and feedback, and that's one of the key things I get out of a demo to a group of people. Everyone has something to say about a piece of work and that feedback is critical to development.”

Tim adds: “There are all sorts of reasons for coming on a painting holiday -- it might be to improve your drawing skills, loosen up your style, learn how to incorporate figures in a landscape -- and it's my job to try to find what your personal objectives are and help you achieve them. Oh and have fun with like-minded people on the way.”

Tim’s painting course at The Watermill

Every day we'll paint outside as much as possible and Tim will try to do two demos during the day. He says: “During the demos I’ll welcome questions, such as ‘Why did you choose that scene?’ ‘What brush are you using there?’ ‘What colour combination did you just use?’ and so on”.

After the demonstration, everyone can have a go at replicating that scene. Tim says: “I will be on hand to look over your shoulder and give some words of encouragement and try to give advice on what, in my opinion, does work and what doesn't. We can also have all our work displayed together and go through a brief critique and compare our experiences".

“If we're in the studio, no problem. There will be opportunity create some watercolour landscapes from some reference photos and we can do exercises on figure work, and getting things like cars or boats into the landscape.

“We all want to take away many things from our time at the Watermill and then the key is to IMPLEMENT at least one thing you have learnt.”

Praise from some of Tim’s previous students

“I'm quite impressed with how you transform a dull image into an impressionistic and beautiful study of light and shadow. You're great tutor!” - LN, USA

“I really like your loose style.” - KA, UK

“You really helped me. I can appreciate the effect of hard and soft edges that you achieve and the powerful change in tones you employ to achieve such great lighting effects. Many thanks.” - RK, India

“Like most, I struggle with too much detail. This will help me to "loosen up". I like how methodical you are and how you capture the light in your paintings. I also find it interesting how your figures are always walking towards the viewer. Seems like most watercolourists have them walking away from the viewer. I think your way brings your paintings to life.” - Andy, UK

“I can’t help being inspired by the careful and wonderfully measured strokes of a genius" - BT, UK