124. Apple

Scanning a painting is a bit of trick – here, you can see that the scan had some dark shades in the corners, not reflective of the smooth, bright white of the paper.  Fixing that issue changes the actual colors, which in this scan are much closer to the actual painting.  So, here is the imperfect scan with perfecter colors.

This was probably the most challenging of the 3 botanical paintings I have done so far.  The highlight in the apple was a challenge, as were all the spots and stripes.  The colors I used were all labeled as transparent on various websites, and they included yellow ochre, lemon yellow, Payne’s grey, permanent alizarin crimson, quinacridone burnt orange, lemon yellow, and nickel azo yellow.  Manufacturers varied to include W&N, Daniel Smith, and M. Graham.

What I have found that seems to pull the final painting together is to place a large, light glaze over various areas of the painting.  For instance, on the left I used a pale yellow-orange glaze to pull the warm tones of the painting together; on the right, I used a combination of alizarin and orange and grey to create a cooler contrast.  In the high light, I used a very light yellowish-alizarin mix.

119. Pear

One of the absolute best things about having a blog, on any subject, is that the world comes to you and, if you look, those who read and look at what you write often provide support and care and concern.  Even if you haven’t met, relationships develop.  There are a lot of people who inspire me, and who send me off in other directions.  Reading others’ blogs, too, even if they don’t read mine, are still forms of connection in areas of common interest.

Today, I want to thank Breathing Deeply because she has said some very encouraging things – but, more – she has mentioned on her blog that she is taking classes online from Anna Mason who is a botanical watercolorist.  Well, I have seen Anna Mason’s work.  She is a self-taught botanical artist.  Botanical art is detailed and realistic, and in some ways, not really what I aim for.  Anna’s work is refreshing and beautiful.  And, she has online courses.  A free one to show you her teaching style, one in which she walks you through how she approaches a simple D’Anjou pear.  Clearly stated, simply done, I decided “what the hell!” and dived in.

I think I might sign up!  I really enjoyed what I learned, and to my way of thinking, perhaps a realistic approach will slow me down when it comes to painting.  I am hasty and careless, don’t think ahead as much as I would like to when painting.  My impatience leads to frustration.

So, thank you Breathing Deeply for your kind words and for your own bloggy inspiration, and to Anna Mason for providing a very nice approach to painting.