Pastel Leaf Study
Week 1 of the leaf study consisted of getting the drawing on the paper (I was using s tan, sanded paper) and basing in features like the veins and folds; light and dark areas to get the leaf under painted.
Note that I am not trying to finish anything at this point, I am just trying to get it to a point so I can see where I need to go, anything can be changed at this point.
I also started adding the background but forgot to take a photo, sorry.
Week 2 I was fleshing out the leaf and adding details and finishing up the back ground.
Once I had the red of the left blended, I added smudges of 2 colors of lavender one a warm, earthy lavender and the other a cool, blue lavender and lightly smudged these colors to create the "sheen" on the leaf.
I also went back into areas around the veins and some of the edges with two versions of light green: One a bit darker for the base of the veins and some of the smudges of green still left in the leaf and a lighter version for the veins themselves, finding an edge that would let me make fine lines.
Also note that some of the finishing of the leaf I used the blue/violet and my indigo to create some of the detail in the leaf, mostly just going around some of those smudges I made earlier.
The fold on the leaf was the critical part of the composition and I needed to create the sense of a third dimension and to accomplish that I had to use the contrast between light and dark.
I used my indigo for shadows and some of the rot forming on the leaf, the pink areas were a combination of several colors of pink, white and orange with a little bit of a light lavender in the shadow areas, blending as I put down each layer until I got the desired color and value.
I used white to suggest some of the veins and to lighten where the brightest light was hitting the fold.
Using the darker colors of the background in most places, I defined the edges of my leaf. The background really only needs to be random color and shapes to suggest other leaves. If you get too much detail in your background it detracts from your subject which is the single leaf.
Also, by keeping the colors in the background a bit muted by adding and blending complimentary color (red and green mostly) it grayed the background colors making the leaf colors look brighter.
Remember doing studies like this lets you experiment with color and techniques and teaches you to really look at your subject. Keep painting and I will see you in class.