Work In Progress: The Weird World of Yupo

Yupo is a painting surface, but it’s not paper or wood. It’s plastic. Polypropylene, to be precise. Watercolor puddles and contracts, acrylic skates across the surface. Watercolor pencil goes on smoothly, like paint. Watercolor markers look great. It’s like working on greased glass. Yupo is not easy to work with if you want it to behave like anything else.

On the other hand, it’s a lot of fun to play with if you just like to experiment.

Yupo_GardenI started by using acrylic paint and cosmetic sponges. Really different feel, but a lot of fun. Then I branched out and tried wetting the whole surface first.

Yupo_FlrsStill no brush. This was paint dripped on wet Yupo, allowed to dry, then some removed, then the background added.

Yupo_seedlingsThis final piece is watercolor pencil and Pitt Pen. Some of the color was added with watercolor markers, then blended.

After a tough week of travel and teaching (although the class was lots of fun, it was far away) playing was a prerequisite to a productive week ahead.

Quinn McDonald will be teaching “The Magic of Yupo” at Arizona Art Supply on February 15. Details and registration.