Friday, September 23, 2011


Watercolor Demo – Value Study Week 2

Torrance students we started on making our value scales in class, if you haven't finished we can do that on Monday. These scales come in handy in many situations so even if you don't do the project, I hope that you will finish the value scale. We will start the project on Monday so I hope that everyone has their drawing on their paper and ready to go.

PV students what we did was more of the same as last time but each time we add a wash of ink we are leaving out more and more areas until we get to the darkest areas of the photo.

You need to really look and use your value scale if you need to, to see where values change which values are darker than others and paint accordingly. The glass and the reflections are going to deserve your attention at this step. Glass not only distorts images of things in it or behind it but it can also distort the value of those same things so really look at the things you see in and behind the glass.

For instance: There is a shadow that goes behind the vase that is offset from the shadow but it is also a shade or two lighter than the shadow outside the vase.

There is a lot going on in the reflections, if you miss something and are still adding layers just paint around it so it may be a bit darker that it should be or you can forget it as long as it looks like a reflection you are ahead of the game. Remember we are artists. I think I've missed some things because my printer didn't print a good enough reference photo for me, but that's okay, it is just a study.

I also want you to notice that I stared adding shading to the flower petals. I did this just like I did the rest of the painting starting out with a light wash and gradually making it darker where it needed to be darker, I did leave the brightest areas the white of the paper.

At this point it is almost done thought I think that there are some areas that need to be darker and I may go ahead next week and take straight ink to finish of the very dark areas. I won't make that determination until I am satisfied that the darks are all I have left to do and that may take another lay or two of washes to make that decision. I'm not in a race, I could take the rest of the semester to finish this and if I were doing this on my own, I probably would take more time to get it "perfect" before calling it done but for instructional purposes torturing my students with more that a couple of weeks of ink washes is enough to get my point across. I may put some color on it when I'm done but I do have the option of leaving it as a black and white, since I am doing two, I can do both.

Please be looking for something you would like to paint whether it has glass and/or reflections in it or not because once we are done with the class project, I would like you all to have something to work on that you want to do and I can give you some help getting started and answer questions that come up. Choosing subject matter is also an important lesson.

Keep painting.

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