Watercolors are generally painted in three stages. First stage is the highlights and light mid-tones. I have two paintings now that are standing at that stage–on top of the diving board. This is the free stage. The loose stage. It really is where the beauty of watercolors exist.
The mid-tone stage is where the details develop, and this is where everything could go wrong. This is where you tighten up. This is the jump. You try to take control and then you loose. The pure beauty is gone. But if things go right and the painting is successful, then you get to come out of the water. You get to enjoy your accomplishment and move onto the final stage.
The final touches are the darks. Stand back and dab them in. Little accents. A little bling. Enjoy it. You've survived the jump. You made it. Phew!!!
Wendy, if you see this, please note that the leaves are not dead center in the corner
of the picture. That is just how the camera cropped it. I haven't forgotten EVERYTHING!