As summer fades away, the fires are burning along the west coast, and the clarity of the air has gone murky. This is when I dream of being somewhere along a river, with sun, blue skies, flowers and birds. I’m a country girl at heart, stuck in suburbia! (But there are advantages of the ‘burbs, too.)
I used Arches Rough 12×16 140# paper. The texture is not as smooth as what CP or HP provide. There is a lot more “tooth” which is great for dry brush and texture, such as in the foreground grasses and middle ground trees. I used one of my hake brushes for the general grass shapes, and a larger, harder brush for the sky. Before I painted any large area, I used the hake brush with clear water, letting it soak in a bit to help the paint to spread more easily on this rough paper.
In general, I am pleased with this painting. DOF works fairly well. I put in a building, too! For me, the most flawed area is the squared-off top of a tree to the left of the building – maybe I will go in later to correct it, but for now, I’ll let it be, cuz it’s time for a nap!
Summer is not yet officially here, but the warmth, sun, birds, and wind all make me long for a quiet spot to sit and relax. No nothing except the sounds of the natural world. Here, all the things I love.
Pastels just feel so natural. Get your fingers into the colors, dust, papers, blending. So tactile. I can’t tell you how many times I washed my hands here, but more than I would even with Covid-19 lurking around . . . . !
More work with water and light. Here I thought about some of the exercises I have followed from Rick Surowicz’s YouTube channel – lines, curves, and dots to capture branches, light, and leaves. I think this painting worked out quite nicely.
Besides considering what I wanted in advance (a way of thinking that has taken a very long time to get to) by applying frisket, I also was determined to paint from light to dark and use glazing and blending. Areas of color were also considered, and rather than trying to paint each leaf, I painted blobs of color to represent the foliage. As a result, I built up layers of color throughout the painting as I moved along, and can say this is possibly the first painting in which I have done this.
I also had to be very patient! Frisket is not happy when you blow dry it – it gets all sticky and you have let it set up again. As a result, this 6×9 painting probably took a couple of hours to do. However, the results, for me, were definitely worth the time it took. Perhaps my impatience is lessening . . .
More wet-in-wet work. This time, I paid a bit more attention to the details along with the wet paper and paint. I laid down washes, waited for them to dry, and then laid down wash upon wash. At times I lifted color out while still wet, too. It’s hard to describe what I did, but overall I was more deliberate in my approach to this painting, taking time rather than letting my impatient personality dominate. The result is a more successful painting.
Colors include burnt sienna, Hooker’s green, ultramarine blue, quinacridone gold, and perhaps a touch of sap green and cobalt blue. Limited palettes really help pull a painting together, as well as help you learn what colors, when mixed, produce what new color.
Brushes included a huge round for the main washes, and then a medium / small round, and a rigger brush for the grasses. I got the rigger as a Christmas present, and this is the first time I used it. I practiced on scrap paper, and can see why a lot of people like them! This one is a bit stiff and has a lot of snap to it.