Tuesday, July 16, 2013

DIY Painting A French Tomate

So it's happened again like clockwork.
On Sunday I fell in love again...
This time I fell hard for a box of French tomatoes.
I've been admiring them for a while now...not a good thing in France. If you wait too long they may be gone when you're ready to buy. Then you'll have to wait till next year. By the way this is a 'coulis' or package of tomatoes. Nothing like falling in a Big way for something. I'll be eating tomatoes morning, noon and night here - Coeur-de Boeuf, Ananas, Noire-de-Crimee,Sicilienne.
Just so you'll know next time you're in the marché this is a 'barquette' which normally holds raspberries or some other delicate fruit (never tomatoes or cherries/cerises).
And this a 'boîte' or a bunch (not a box).
Coeur de Boeuf from Brittany pretty well describes the shape of this tomato.
Though I'd prefer another name (as a semi-vegetarian) but nobody asked me...
Something to look forward to and plan on your calendar - a grand festival de la Tomate at the Chateau de la Bourdaisiere on the 7, 8 of September.  Owner, Prince Louis Albert de Broglie is also the savior of fabulous Deyrolle on 46, rue de Bac 75007.
If you're nice to the sellers in the marche you may get a guide to French tomatoes - the varieties are endless.
Time to wet your brushes PBers and tackle painting some tomatoes plus a cherry and tomato-red nail polish I couldn't resist in Monoprix. First trace your drawing on top of your photo on the iPad. Then lay in some cool shadows.
A wash of water and drop in some warm Scarlet Red. Tilt your board to get the paint to move around.
Same thing with the cerise/cherry. Lay in some Cadmium or any yellow on top of the water puddle
Before you drop the red on top. Let it runnnnn! The paint will move on it's own if you let it. Just sit back and watch the action.
I probably should have stopped here while I was ahead. That's the tricky thing to watercolor. Not doing/tweaking/fiddling too much and knowing when to stop.
Hmmm...too late. C'est comme ca.
Take the plunge. Why not? If you send me the results I'll post them!
My messy paintboxes.
Dog-of-the day at marche Bastille
And nanny goats/chevre of the day.
Get out your paintboxes PBers
Ready steady GO!


  1. So very jealous of all this variety in tomatoes! Bet they taste exquisite too ... no wonder you're in love :)
    And omg, for once the dog of the day is eclipsed in sheer cuteness by those adorable little chevres!

    1. Oh they are soooo luscious.
      I was never much of a tomato fan but boy has that changed!

  2. Deliciuos post ,i love the beby chevres so sweet and cute ,and the chevres cheese is my favourite

  3. Love love love Carol! I am so taking you up on this. Friday I pick up my subjects at the Farmer's Market :)

  4. Well I love tomatoes so I would have been tempted also..Coeur de Boeuf..I have always preferred..:)

    It's a real shame my Nexus..once I tansfer a photo onto it..and put my paper on top to trace.. the picture enlarges! it doesn't freeze in place..So I can never get a proper trace..
    I am definitely going to do this one next Carol..I trued a cherry tomato Sunday it looks like a little green bomb or something.
    Love the painting.
    Thanks for the tutorial.
    Now that I have more than one paintbox..I see the attraction..as they all paint differently no matter how novice one is..
    Apart from the fact that I love looking at them.

    1. You have to set up a 'slideshow' album..they must have the same thing as Apple!?
      Then pop in just ONE photo into the album
      Next turn off the Nexus
      Turn it on but set it to slideshow (the flower button on The iPad)
      Et voila the picture won't wiggle.
      It works/ça marche

  5. Oh I just love your Parisian site!!!! It's keeps me going until my next visit....the tomatoes....I'm awaiting the arrival of my gardens first few....mmmmmm.....so heavenly...
    But my biggest THANKYOU is the wonderful watercolor lesson....I just adore watercolors..my mother did some beautiful work but I'm still like a 4 year old...maybe this will help!!
    Merci merci merci!!!!!!! I cannot wait to be back!!

    1. A 4 year old is completely free if the inhibitions of us grow ups so Go For It!

  6. I hope it will..ill try later..right now..i traced on my Netbook and am looking at my first Carol Tutorial..a FAR cry from yours..I have to leave soon..but geesh you are so good at painting realistically but..with a real charm..the light in the nail polish bottle etc..
    I just love it all.
    Like Miss Holly above..my mom was a great artist..before I was born.. I wish some of her Beaux~ Arts and inate talents resided in moi.
    Thank you Carol..It is work to do a tutorial..
    And I loved it..will do it again with more time.

    1. Watercolor class anyone?
      I'm thinking of doing a class on SkillShare maybe if there is interest...


    2. I am interested in your online class! Thanks.

  7. It's tomato season in our farmers markets, too, though I have harvested only 2 from the garden so far. I always wonder how the farmers get the jump on me, but the heirloooms and even the hybrids are worth every penny. Yes, tomatoes for breakfast, lunch and dinner till October!!!!

  8. I love summer tomatoes! Everyone things theirs are the best, and I think they are ALL the best! Cherries, too, but the tart Montmorency ones are my favorites! Maybe I'll try the watercolor exercise, too....ummm?

  9. Those chevre babies are darling - and especially in La Cirque boîtes! My friend, JoAnne, has given me a watercolor lesson and now you, too, have tried to get me started! So many loves, so little time! I love your idea about tilting the board and just watching the paint run throughout the water puddle! I think I'll try it!

  10. Anonymous12:27 PM

    This is wonderful...some of the tomatoes look like heirlooms..I wanted to reach in and pluck one...

  11. Lynne They call them
    Tomate a l'ancienne

  12. Anonymous12:29 PM

    Love seeing these step-by-steps
    Love the paintboxes too

  13. Oooooh--are you going to start giving lessons now, Carol? Awesome! I love it. Love a good tomato, too. We had some from the farmer's market last week that were delicious, and not acidic, but when I asked the guy what variety they were, he said they were actually hothouse tomatoes! He grows beyond organic, and his stuff is always fabulous. Yum. We got some of his honey, and I use it in my granola I make. Delish.

    1. SkillShare classes are online and $20
      Check the link but I'm not ready yet
      Too busy moving this month
      More lecons to come on PB if you like

  14. Lately I noticed that you have posted one watercolor painting, however small, in the beginning of each entry, love it! And really appreciate your step-by-step "tell-all" of watercolor painting! And the information on paints and paint boxes!

  15. Carol, I only wish I had your talent for painting! Alas, I am a dismal failure at that,so instead I will double(triple!) up on appreciation to you for sharing yours with us!
    Heirloom/Tomates a'lAncienne! Oh!
    So divine, so Summer!
    What stole my heart most was that precious Scottie and those adorable chevre babies!
    Thank you for the smiles!

  16. I'm signed up..password and all..let me know when you are ready and tell me us what to do:)

  17. Your tomatoes- real and painted- look sensation. One thing i love about the tomatoes here is that they sell red and yellow mixed, so you don't have to buy two punnets- such a fabulous idea- so simple. Love the chevres too- gorgeous- it's my favourite cheese too. Very interesting to see your step by step progress- I think painting tutorials online is a sensational idea for you- good luck with it.

  18. Oh, I love painting posts! I love to see how things take shape one section at a time! So of course I'm wild about this one! And your subject is one near and dear to my heart... sigh. Such a short season for these really fine tomatoes -- then you get the ones that appear stuffed with styrofoam. Ugh! These are the best! And so if your painting!

  19. Where do I look for your watercolor class once I sign in in Silkshare?

    1. I'm just in the thinking planning stage Jin
      I'm moving right now too!

  20. Tap tap tap......
    Do I sound impatient?

  21. I don't see your paints as messy, but rather well loved.

    I never thought I'd say this, but the baby goats make me want one. I would be in so much trouble at the market. I totally lose my head.

  22. I love the watercolors and your lesson on painting but damn if those goats don't steal make the post for me :)

  23. I cannot figure out what kind of blue the nail polish bottle is. I have checked the color chart of several brands. I don't see any blue this dark.

    1. Jin try Paynes Grey + French Ultramarine ;)

  24. Anonymous12:52 AM

    look forward to your lessons....
    do you miss ny in any way or Paris
    is just yoo exciting to care about ny ?

  25. I miss the cheese Danishes on the corner and eating and walking blithely in the street

  26. Anonymous10:43 AM

    I love the demonstration on how to watercolor. I'd love to see more of this! Thanks! Our tomatoes are just beginning to come in here in Maryland.
    I didn't know you are a semi vegetarian! That!s awesome! I am a low fat raw vegan.
    We'll be in France for 3 weeks (Provence/Cote D'Azur) and Barcelona for 4 days beginning Sept 1st. I'm sure there will be plenty of delicious fruits and vegetables to eat!! Can't wait to try the melons in Cavaillon!

    1. I'm currently a semi-flexi-Veg
      When in Paris ya gotta taste Everything or miss out big time ;)

  27. Anonymous2:26 PM

    Tomates are my favorites and the Nanny Goats are adorable!

    Merci Carol!


  28. Thank you, Carol. It worked, Paynes Grey + French Ultramarine turned out a beautiful dark blue.

  29. Color is a mystery to me. How did you get the brownish green for the green tomato?

    1. That's the fun of watercolor is learning your colors and how they work with each other. Just like cooking ingredients. It's no good copying someone else's recipes though we do it all the time. The key is to find out through trial and error (lots of errors!) what we really like. Finding our own voice.
      Bonne chance Jin

  30. Anonymous12:55 PM

    You almost talked me into getting that water color set out yesterday. I want to. I think I am afraid. Maybe tomorrow? I love the step by step instructions, but when you say to throw some water on the paper or puddle it on, or whatever you say, it just seems to me that the paint would run the heck all over the place and certainly not stay in the tomato outline! I am waiting to see you post some of your reader's attempts. I could try it and send you my abstract runny tomato.
    Maybe I will just enjoy your paintings.


    1. That's exactly what you want. Give up control and let the paint runaround.

  31. Dear PB, I'm a 17 year old who is just picking up watercolours and I love the soft, dreamy effect in your paintings, but I'm having trouble with hard edges forming when it drys. Do you have any tips? Thank you for you time!

    1. Try applying a damp brush to the edges before they dry to soften them. You Must watch the paint dry to catch it.
      Bon chance


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