Saturday, October 4, 2014

Watercolor Class Project Week 3: Cloud Study

I finished up the Cloud Study at PV in the last class, Torrance we will be done this in our Monday class though I do have some work to finish up my clouds, I do think we will be finished with our clouds as well so start looking for your own project to start the following week. PV students you will need to find a project you would like to do or finish up the clouds when we have class, I will be around to help and do spot demos for problem areas.

Once you feel you are finished with your clouds the final thing to do is put in your mountains and foreground. It is best to start with the mountains that are furthest away. They should be softer and grayer than the mountains in front but they are close enough to have a little bit of color. If you have some gray left over on your palette you can use that (one of the reasons I don’t clean off my palette, I may need a color that is already mixed) but if you need to mix gray remember it is ultramarine blue, a little burnt sienna and a touch of purple with enough water to dilute it to a medium gray. To this gray I added a touch of orange and a bit more sienna, I want a warm gray. This color should also be a stronger value (darker) than the grays in the clouds. The reason for this is it is closer than the clouds and as objects come closer they become more intense in color, less gray. This is how you get depth in a 2 dimensional painting.

I painted this color onto the ridge on the right side. If you can’t see it, make it up. You are the artist and you can create things if you think it will help your painting. While that area is still a bit wet, mix up a touch of orange, with the mud that is on your brush and a bit more water to create a soft orange color and lightly touch your brush to the wet paint to create ridgelines and subtle details in the distant mountains. Let the watercolor do all of the work, just touch the tip of your brush to the paper, make a line and let it go. If you mess with it too much you won’t get the look you want and it is an aspect of watercolor you need to understand so you can make it work for you not against you.

The next ridge has more color so to that same gray I used on the last ridge, I added some hooker’s green and a touch of blue to make it more colorful and a deeper value (it is closer so it needs to be a deeper value).

While that ridge is still wet I added a bit more sienna to that gold color I used on the other ridge and did the same thing: created some detail by just touching the tip of the brush to the wet paper. I also picked up a little blue and went on the shadowed side (right side) of the mountains and just touched to createsome shadows. These mountains are closer so you might see those shadows.

With each closer ridge I added more color into the gray until I got to the tops of the trees that were closest to the viewer, I under painted with a light green (sap green with yellow will work and add water to dilute) and while it was wet I did a similar thing to what I did in the clouds: I added darker greens in shapes leaving some of the light areas to show highlights.

Let this dry. If you feel you need to go back in to add color or value wait until it is dry so you know exactly what you have to do. If you like it the way it is then it is time to move on to something new. I will see you all in class.

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