I now focus on the middle ground and distant hills. The hills have to be sufficiently greyed to push them back but at the same time there has to be a suggestion of the pattern of heather on them. I use a hog’s hair brush with solid pigment. Dragging this over the texture of the watercolour board breaks the colour up and softens it
Close attention is now paid to the middle distance. I compare the tonal and colour differences with the landscape beyond and begin adding some suggested detail of trees , gorse, and river. I paint the river in the foreground looking at how the sky is reflected in it. This necessitates painting over the foreground trees which I had initially blocked. Being gouache, this is easily done. These will be reinstated at a later stage.
I am still using fairly large brushes, building up texture, and painting loosely. The beauty of gouache is that it dries instantly, yet is opaque and remains water soluble. Alterations and additions are easy to make as will be seen in the next stage.