Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Ethereal Light

As the painting that follows this one uses gouache, I thought I would publish this post to make a comparison. This painting has also been sold - the owner was drawn to the colours and light in the painting. It is a wonderful way to use watercolours to their full potential. I enjoy painting 'soft' scenes, but strong, bright colours make me feel a whole lot better.

I absolutely love trees so I try and capture their 'personalities' from time to time. This painting was achieved using the pouring technique, whereby one literally pours the three primary colours over the white paper before beginning the painting stage. Daunting and exciting at the same time. The yellow represents the lightest values, red, the midtones and blues, the shadows. The atmosphere is there from the start. It frees you up to paint with more expression.

The darker forms are then painted so that the actual picture starts coming to life. Because there is so much colour on the paper, it is necessary to incorporate some gouache for highlights. (The purists can avoid this by pouring lighter washes and lifting highlights straight away).

The tints were applied using gouache straight out of the tube using mainly scumbling, which enables the background to show through. I wanted a dappled effect.

If you have become too careful or precious about your painting then I strongly recommend you try this to re-jig your methods.

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