151. Aspen Grove

I painted this using multiple layers of frisket on the paper.  On the first round, I blocked off the right side of the aspens.  Once I was fairly content with the overall image, I added frisket over various areas, such as the greens and browns of the foliage.  I made lines to represent trees, and dots to suggest a glint of sunshine on a leaf.  I did this three or four times on dried paint.  In the end, I removed the frisket, left some areas white, and painted over other white areas with transparent glazes, hoping to pull together different areas of the painting.  Finally, I made small dots of colored paint in the foliage, to suggest leaves.

This study was to utilize what I have been learning from the experience of following Rick Surowicz’s YouTube videos, as well as what I learned just painting.  This is the first time I conscientiously laid out a plan or method on how to approach the painting.  First, drawing.  Then frisket.  Next, washes of green, gold, brown, and oranges broad across the paper and blurred using a spray bottle and blotting.  From there, details, contrast, and so on.  Overall, I think my painting has taken a turn for the better.

147. In the Woods

Inktober is done and gone . . . this past week I’ve been sewing like a fiend, last night there was a mass shooting down the road from us with a thirteen people killed and eighteen wounded – more –  there are fires to the east and west of us, and the wind is blowing like crazy.  There is peace in ink.

138. Cold & Cloudy

Inktober continues apace, but I have been going 100 mph for the past week.  No time to focus on a theme.  This morning, though, I thought about cold mountains and winter – where I live, it’s in the mid-80s to low-90s, and I could use a bit of blustery weather.

Here is a mountain – inky for Inktober

And here is the same scene, in cold and wintry colors.

I used to do a lot of Chinese painting, and I tried to incorporate the clouds in a  rather Chinese-painting fashion, in ink and watercolor.  Hints, not direct; subtlety rather than blatant.  I’m not sure if it worked for the clouds between the mountains, but I definitely like the chilliness and fogginess of the scene overall.

109. Olive Orchard

Living in a “Mediterranean” climate means living in a dry, temperate climate.  Locally, we have a number of olive orchards which produce local oils that are tasty and delicious.  Here is a tribute to them.

Besides commercial uses, olive trees are often used as decorative trees in one’s yard as they do require a lot of upkeep in terms of water – but the downside is a messy yard as the olives drop.  Most people never consider using the olive fruit for anything at all.

I tried to simplify everything in this painting – trunks, field, crown of trees.  At the same time, I tried to work on contrast and failed overall.  It’s really a talent to get something dark enough on the first take!  The trees on the left look like one in the foreground in overlapped by the leaves of the one further distant.  And so on.  However, getting out the paints every day is the goal, and practice, not making a “completed” painting is the whole point.

43.4 Two Color Studies: Trail in the Snow

Another two-color study, this time using Burnt Sienna instead of Burnt Umber, along with the Ultramarine Blue.  As an aside, looking up lists of “warm” and “cool” colors, the umber and ultramarine are considered “warm” by some.  Beats me, as they sure look icy together.  Here, the Burnt Sienna alone or diluted is warm in cast, but moves to dark and cold (in my eye) when combined with the Ultramarine Blue.