Sunday, September 27, 2015

WATERCOLOR FALL CLASS 2015 Project: Cool Refuge

Hopefully everyone was able to get the drawing onto their paper. One of the things I did forget to do is to add in the plants in the planters in the background and the plants underneath the chair so you may want to draw both in before you get started. It no big deal you can adlib as you go, just be aware that you will need to leave some space for them before you do the darker colors.

The first thing I did was to paint the entirepaper with a mix of my Cad yellow light with a little touch of orange and a lot of water. I want this to be a very pale color so you need to add enough water to really dilute the color and then I painted it onto the entire surface of my paper everything else in the picture is darker then that one light wall so painting everything with this color is not going to bother or hurt the things that go on top of it.

This next part you do not have to do but I like to do it, so while my paper was wet, I mixed up a ugly grey which, in my case, I just took water and mix it into the dirty part of my palate and got a soft  dirty grey but if you don't have a dirty palette, mix blue, purple, burnt sienna and any other color you want plus a lot of water, you just want a soft blue/purple/gray. Then splattered or throw this color on your paper with a big brush you want big splatters, overall your paper. I didn't do a lot of splatters I did some splatters, I want the finished painting to look like an old photograph like you found it someplace and it's got mold and dirt on it but it has a lot of memories as well. Then I let it dry completely.
PV version
When my paper was dry I wanted to know where the chair was so I painted the chair with a touch of orange and burnt sienna and water you don't want to get too dark color, so use lots of water and I painted in the entire outline of the chair with this color we will be going over it with darker colors this color ends up being the light paint is still hanging on to this poor beat up old chair. I also used this color to under paint the planter box and the window divisions on the sunny wall. Again, I let this dry completely.

When my paper was dry I needed to mix color for the wall behind the chair. This is just a wash. Again this has a lot of water in it and just a little bit of color the color, more of a tint. What I used was a mix purple with a little touch of blue in it and lots of water and I painted the wall behind the chair with this wash of color, painting around a chair and between the slats.

I love to paint old dirty broken nasty things and one of the things I like about the photograph was the mold that was growing on the wall behind the chair it gives the chair a sense of having been there for a long time and maybe neglectful but I like that mold so while paper is wet, right behind the chair, make up the dirtiest ugliest color you can using green, purple, blue, brown… just mix it up ugly and then tap it into the wet don't paint it in. Tap it in and let the paint just spread on its own the way it wants to, that's the way mold grows, you can even drop some water back into that wet ugly color area and that too will help it look just like mold growing then you let it dry again. Salt would also work.

While the wall is drying you can under paint for the plants that are in the planter box the planter by the door and the plant under the chair. Again we are dealing with a wash which is a very thin application of color. Using either of your greens - either sap green or Hooker's green - with a touch of yellow and a little touch of orange and a lot of water, under paint your plants, this becomes the highlights for your plants. Also, remember that what you are painting is a wild, living, growing thing it doesn't grow in nice symmetrical clumps it branches out, it is irregular shape so when you are painting your plants, be sure that the edges of the plants you are painting our irregular as well: up down sideways lot of movement in your brush.

When your wall is dry you're going to start on the walkway that is next to the sunny wall.  Using orange with a little touch of burnt sienna and water, maybe not quite as thin as we've been making it but still it is a wash, and with flat strokes, this is going to be more like calligraphy then painting, you're going to make a series of little shapes that will represent the flagstones or cobblestones of the walkway. When things are further away they are the smaller and closer together as they come towards you they get further apart and larger, this is part of perspective. The light yellow that we put on there at the beginning becomes the highlights on the top of the flagstones or cobblestones so don't paint over all of it you must learn to save your lights for the highlights.

Look at the reference photo and you will see that there is a shadow being cast by the wall into that walkway but you will also see that there is a transition area where it's not light and it's not and shadow yet it still has a warmth but has a richer color about it, because of the reflected light. Look at that area before you start painting the next part which is the shadows the shadows go in and over some of that light area because of the rough texture of the flagstones so there isn't a hard shadow line on the ground it is a soft line and very irregular.
Note how the shadows follow the shape of the bricks
To mix the first of the shadow colors for the walk around the chair, you are going to mix a cool grey color which, again, will be your blue, purple, and burnt sienna. It can be a little more to the blue side but be sure that you use enough water we aren't going for the deepest darkest parts of the shadows just yet we are only going for what will be the light parts of the flagstones or cobblestones around the chair so please don't make it too dark. When you're in that transition area you can take some of that shadow color and into parts of the sunny your area just and leave some sunny spots in that margin area between your sunny area and the shadow area. You can also use this color for the shadow in the doorway around the outside of the window because these are both recessed into the wall, then you can add a little touch more blue and use that start the window panes.

The red door can be any of your reds and a touch of blue, you want it to still look red but the blue makes it look as if it's in shadow. That should get you caught up to where we ended in class this week. Remember with watercolor it is better to sneak up on the finished look of your painting then to try to go straight to the finished color or value. Learn to use thin washes and glazes rather than mixing up dark paint and then having to try and lift it off. This knowledge and skill comes with practice so in time, as you become more familiar with your paints and how they work it will become second nature, however, as a beginner you need to remember work in thin washes and glazes.  Keep painting and I will see you in class.

Torrance Version

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