Saturday, March 19, 2016

Working Out The Ribs

Another partial day in the studio today, working out the rib shapes on this cactus.  Having chosen the colors I wanted to use, today was the day to see how they'd look layered in like I planned.  Not too bad, so far.  

The underpainting, violet for shadow, green and palest yellow for the light/local color
A full sheet of paper takes what I think of as the "hurry up and wait" system of painting.  Hurry and drop in the colors I want while it's wet, then wait till it's dry enough to add the next layer of color.  I could be laying in sections all over it, but I want to see how this bit turns out after it's dried all night so I know how bright to take the next part.  Watercolors lighten as they dry and you never know what you'll get by the time that happens. 

After it dries, I am glazing over it with a loud, bright green
To my way of working here, it's all a series of adjustments.  You paint one section, then the next- and go back to adjust between the sections to help them fit together harmoniously.  It's a give and take puzzle and I (usually) enjoy it.  
Using the same palette for the ribs as they grow closer to the viewer, I am just making them a brighter hue to emphasize their proximity.  I don't want them to be the star of the show, but a nice, solid supporting player.
Though I'm still chewing on the blossom colors, wavering back and forth between salmon and an in-your-face cool red, I'm already thinking about how to make them look waxy rather than translucent.  This is my idea of fun!  Not tied to a photo or a real-life model, I can make it up as I go.  So I am! 

Thanks for stopping by- Alice  

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