Another impulse purchase! But I was intrigued. I get the sense that until very recently watercolours came in two basic formats: the tube and the pan, the latter being a little box with a hard lump of stuff that, when wet, becomes paint. There is a new emphasis now on portability. And technology has played a part in this by being able to concentrate pigment into a number of different formats.

I was on Instagram recently and one of the people I follow, @minortismay, the inspiration, by the way, for the miniature floral wreaths, was demonstrating her art using what looked like a little booklet of flat colour shapes. The colours seemed to be pretty vibrant and easy to use. There was a link to the booklet in her post and an offer of a 15% discount to boot.

I followed the link to a company called Viviva, didn’t think about it much and bought one of the booklets. That was about a week or so ago, and the booklet arrived today, delivered to my office by our very friendly postal worker. It’s smaller than I thought it would be and it was made in, and delivered from India.

Regular readers of this blog will know that I’m not good with watercolours. Although I’d love to be able to get some sense out of them, I can’t seem to. It’s probably impatience on my part and an aversion to the discipline of practice. So, I’m constantly trying to find something that will shortcut that process and this little booklet is the latest something.

Here’s the booklet. The little discoloured blobs on some of the pages are where I’ve used it.

This is what I did this evening. Although it’s not great, I enjoyed using the booklet. The pigment is quite intense and the colours are vivid, although I had terrible trouble mixing the greens for some reason.

They are supposed to be sweet pea and lilac. I hope you guessed.

Then it did this with gouache on a pistachio shell to bring today’s artistic endeavours to a close.

Regular readers will know that I have shed blood for my art, mainly by jabbing knives and gouges into my hand and fingers. Well, yesterday I suffered another art-related injury when I fell down my stairs at home. I was walking downstairs, carrying a beaker in which I had just rinsed out some brushes and looking up, over my shoulder, at my jellyfish, hanging above the attic stairs, to see whether it was moving in the draught. I missed my step and, in a shower of pink water, fell backwards and landed heavily, with my back taking the brunt of the edge of a step. Ouch. Nothing broken I think, just a bruise and irritating pain.

Viviva