(Monday Class's post will follow this post so scroll down.)
This week we started our version of the Pink Umbrella going step by step, one wash at a time.
Once we had the drawing on we added light washes of Yellow and Orange for the flowers and where there is going to be rocks or paths, a light wash of burnt sienna. Look at the photo for suggestions of the paths and rocks. I did move some rocks on the right of the photo into my design because they were outside the cropped area. I was "dabbing" with my brush rather than making long strokes and I was trying to follow the curves of the hills with my strokes to give texture and contours to my hills.
Second verse same as the first except on the rocks and paths. More orange and yellow to the flower ares to make them brighter and same kind of strokes. I need to get the value (darkness) of the hill behind the woman dark enough to make her stand out. This can take several layers to accomplish so don't try to rush the process because you can rush right past where you wanted to be.
I did a separate demo on creating rocks out of just a swath of color because the rocks on the hillside are rather small and would be hard for you to see.
Creating a pile of rocks so they don't look like a wall takes a bit of practice and studying rocks will help but the biggest thing is to vary your sizes and shapes.
It is very human to line everything up and make it all the same size and shape, Nature isn't like that. Things in Nature are chaotic/random, a pile of rocks can be an assortment of building sized boulders down to tiny pebbles, you as an artist need to be able to see this in Nature then picture it in your minds eye when painting. Fro this example I added some blue and crimson to the burnt sienna to create a cool, shadow rock color then decided the sun was coming from the left and shadows were on the right then tried to create a pile of rocks of various sizes, shapes and direction. This is also how I added the rocks into the painting (next photo) but with even less detail. Remember, suggestions are better in paintings rather than spelling it all out for your viewer.
All these rocks are is a suggestion. They are too far away for much detail and the shadows don't need to be any darker.
I added one more layer of color to the MIDDLE GROUND ONLY. The same orange, the same yellow and at about the same strength (mix or water to pigment). I didn't add any more to the far background to help give a sense of distance to my painting. I think that this is the last wash of color I will do on the middle ground flowers at this time, I will see how it looks when I"m a bit further on but at this point that is about where I want the value around the woman.
I also started added some of the green areas once I was done with the flower colors. The green is a mix of sap or Hooker's green and orange with water to thin the color to get an army green color. You can see the color where I painted over the white paper, those darker greens happen because I painted over orange areas with the green and the green became darker and browner, this is how watercolor works because it is a transparent medium, this is also what I wanted.
This is where we left off in class, we got a lot done, if you are still trying to get here don't worry we have time, just don't rush, take your time, speed comes with experience and with watercolor speed is a relative term.
Keep painting and I will see you in class
Monday Watercolor Class Project:
Pink Umbrella Week 3 Final
This week turned out to be the final week for this project, no one more surprised than I was, thought it would be at least 4 or 5 weeks to complete but that gives you time to finish or start your own project.
To finish up this painting I focused on the detail in the foreground with the plants and flowers and then the woman.
Where I had big patches of just color (yellow orange or lavender) I mixed a dark green with the Hooker's and blue with a touch or sienna to make a dark, cool drab green, then I negative painted in shadow areas in those solid colors to suggest clumps or individual flowers. You need to get dark in and around these clumps so they will stand out.
On the lavender color I mixed a deeper blue color with ultramarine and crimson to suggest the deeper colors of the blue flowers as well as the above dark green to suggest the clumps of flowers.
The woman isn't as hard as you would think, the hardest part was finding the right color for the umbrella and none of the colors I normally use would work, so I looked in my bag of paints and found Thalo Crimson and it was just about perfect, if you have Opera, that is also a good color for her umbrella. If you need some thalo, ask me in class, it only takes a tiny amount.
The umbrella and purse were only mixed with water to lighten. On the umbrella I added an almost straight out of the tube color right along the outside edge of the back edge of the umbrella, then I rinsed my brush and with just the water on my brush (damp not dripping) I moved the color up towards the to of the umbrella. I rinsed my brush several times so I could get a graded color. The top of the umbrella I left white.
The shadows on her dress was the same color I used on the lavender flowers but with more water so it was very dilute. I was looking at the photo so see where the shadows were and left the white of the paper as the white of her dress.
For her face I used the shadow color and added a touch of burnt sienna to it, it was still very dilute. For her hair and the dark ribbon on her hat it was a more concentrated mix of the sienna and blue to create a dark color.
Do not get too picky with painting her, she is too far away for much detail, you just need to suggest things and she will be there when you are done.
This is the finished painting. If you need more time to finish yours we still have a couple of weeks left, otherwise, you and I can work on something we want to paint for the rest of the semester. If you have questions or need me to demo something you are having problems with, let me know and I will do a demo for the class because I am sure you are not the only one with similar problems.
Keep painting and I will see you in class.