Wednesday, November 25, 2015
Wednesday, November 4, 2015
- 140 lb. watercolor paper or watercolor journal (I used a journal for these paintings, as I painted while on vacation.)
- Brushes: Size of your choice - Round brush; ½” flat brush; Liner or detail brush
- Cerulean blue
- Windsor Blue
- Ultramarine blue
- Payne’s Gray
- Sap Green
- Yellow Ochre
- Alizarin Crimson
- VanDyke Brown
Paint the foreground using Sap Green and yellow ochre need the tree line and working down into the sap green. Drop in a little bit of brown at the base of the structure. Using a wash of crimson and brown, paint the wooden walkway. Allow to dry. Using a liner brush, put in the details of the lighthouse tower and building as well as the walkway. Drop in a touch of yellow ochre in the top of the lighthouse. Allow to dry.
Not messy at all! I am a very messy painter and can almost go through a roll of paper towels every time I paint. For some reason, I find that there is barely any mess at all with this type of painting. I do keep a pocket pack of Kleenex handy…..just in case.
How do I get started?
Grab your watercolor travel kit and go!
Just a little history of the tunnel:
The Appalachian Trail Conservancy Regional Office provides the following information:
“There are a few things that are certain:
1) The A. T. has always passed within sight of the north end of the tunnel;
2) The A. T. has not passed through the tunnel since 1939. Beyond that, there is some evidence in favor of the notion that the A. T. passed through the tunnel between 1934 and 1939 and some evidence against the notion."
I enjoy painting locations in the mountains. While hiking, I’ll take a photo with my phone and paint when I get back to the studio; I especially like painting on a rainy day when hiking is not as enjoyable. Now, for the reason for my blog…..painting instructions!
- 140# Watercolor paper – I use Arches
- #12 round brush
- Flat brush
- Liner brush
- Payne’s Gray
- Sap Green
- Yellow Ochre
- Van Dyke Brown
To emphasize certain stones, it will be necessary to paint them individually. Wet only the stone you would like to paint with clean water. Drop in the paint using the gray, the yellow or both. However, this needs to be varied on each stone you paint. Not every individual stone is painted, only several to give some detail to the stone wall. Allow to dry and using a liner brush and a mix of Payne’s Gray and VanDyke Brown, paint some of the edges of the stones making certain that you do not outline each stone. Your pencil marks will show through in some areas which will be sufficient in defining the stones. Allow to dry.
Great job – sign your name!
Monday, October 26, 2015
Van Dyke Brown
I masked off the tree trucks and a few of the limbs with masking fluid. I wanted to be able to make these stand out in the background among the foliage.
Note: I did not feel it necessary to mask off the barn or roof. Watercolor will only flow into areas where it is wet. I simply did not wet that area when I applied my water to the background.
The road is painted wet on wet with a wash of Payne's Gray and Van Dyke brown. When the wash dries, spatter some of the same color paint on the road. Leave some of the areas lighter for tire tracks.
Allow the road and the grassy areas to dry.
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
There is just something relaxing to walk barefoot on the beach…..the warmth of the sand and its smooth texture underfoot, the rush of the wind, the spray of the waves, the scent of the ocean - salty, fishy and fresh, the sound of the waves and the seagulls mixed in with laughter of children at play……
So, if we can’t be there at least we can capture that moment on canvas!
Since this painting shows only a person from mid-thigh down, it is easy for everyone to project themselves into the painting as the one walking on the beach and experiencing all the sensations that image evokes.
The painting above is an acrylic on canvas using primarily a palette of blues and greens.
Canvas – I used a 16 x 20 stretched canvas.
Acrylic paints: A basic set of acrylic paints which may include the following colors:
Note: The paint list is large; however, this can be decreased by purchasing “flesh tint” for the legs and feet. Also, you may want to limit the shades of colors used in the water and the jeans. This painting can be achieved with a basic set of acrylic paints.
How to make flesh tint:
Mixing the colors to make flesh tint may seem challenging; however, it can easily be accomplished by mixing the following primary colors:
The various shades can be adjusted by adding white and/or increasing/decreasing the amount of one of the other primary colors to perfect the tone you would like.
A word of caution: Do not use black to deepen the skin tone; it can add a greenish tint to the color.
Sketch the drawing on the canvas with minimal details. You will only need the sand/ocean horizon line and the shape of the knees, legs and feet. The details will be painted in after the basic background has been painted in.
Background: Ocean/Waves and Beach
Starting at the top of the painting with the deepest of your blue tones, work down the painting mixing and blending the various shades and colors of blue from deepest at the top to lightest at the shoreline. Mix green into the water at the top third of the painting, but let the blue show through. Do not paint in a straight line across, but vary the line to indicate the shape of the wave and the movement of the water. I used a flat brush to put down the basic coat of paint and worked back in with a round brush swirling the paint to give movement. Add touches of white paint to show wave breaks or ”white tops.”
Prepare a mix of paint for the sand using raw sienna mixed with white and a touch of yellow. Vary the intensity of the color by increasing and decreasing the amount of white. Where the sand and beach meet, swirl in white paint with a round brush where the waves hit the shore.
I allowed the background to dry somewhat so that then I painted the main part of the painting, I was not worried about smearing this paint into the other parts of the painting.
The jeans can be any “wash” of denim you would like. I used a darker denim to contrast and stand out from the ocean. However, depending on how dark your ocean may be a light wash might be what is needed. Base your denim shade on what shade your ocean turned out.
Using a flat brush lay down your basic jean color working lighter and darker shades of the same color into create highlights, creases and wrinkles as well as the rolled up cuff. Remember the rolled up cuff of the jean leg will be slight lighter than the outside of the pant leg.
Legs and Feet:
Using your flesh tones either mixes or purchased paint, put in a base coat using a flat brush and work in darker and lighter shades of that tone to show shadows and highlights. Remember this does not have to be details, create a feeling of movement – you are not painting every toe.
Deepen the areas of sand around the feet using a flat brush and pulling the paint from deepest near the foot to lighter as it moves out in a horizontal line. Add lighter and darker sand tones as well as white on the sand for highlights and shadows.
Look over the rest of your painting and add highlight or touches of color here and there as needed.
Congratulations! Sign your name; your painting is complete. Now look at the painting and hear the sound of the waves and feel the sand under your feet…………………
Tuesday, September 29, 2015
This watercolor painting was done from a photo taken on a recent hike in the Great Smoky Mountains. Fall is one of my favorite seasons of the year to hike AND capture in paint!
The best way to start the painting is to analyze the scene and determine the colors in the landscape. The Great Smoky Mountains are known by the smoky haze that rises over the mountain peaks. This painting is of a vista along the trail in early morning before the sun peeked through the smoke. The grasses are starting to die back, and there are gold and brown touches among the green grasses. The trees, except for these evergreens, are slowing turning, but are still mostly green. The background trees are cast in shadow and smoke.
140# Watercolor paper – I use Arches
#12 round brush
Van Dyke Brown
Sketch the scene on your paper which has been taped to a board. We will be executing this painting, as with most watercolors, by starting with the background and working forward – wet on wet.
Wet the top portion of your paper down to the horizon. Using a pale wash of Payne’s Gray, paint in your sky using a flat brush and allowing the gray to form clouds, but leaving lots of white. While this is still wet create areas of tree shapes with lighter in the background building into darker in the foreground. Add more Payne’s Gray and a little bit of Ultramarine. I used a large round brush for the tree shapes. Leave lighter areas of gray and white space between the darker tree shapes to create the “smoke.” Use a tissue or paper towel to blot out some of the excess paint to create cloud shapes. This is painted down to the horizon with the green trees painted on top of this background. Spray with water as needed to mist the trees. Allow this to dry.
Layer in some pale shades of green for background trees, building in deeper color as you move forward to the trees in the midrange of the painting. Deepen your green with ultramarine and add touches of this to indicate shadows in the trees. Allow some of the lighter areas as well as background to show through. Allow to dry.
Lay down your base for the grass by using a wet on wet technique of a light green and yellow ochre. Drop in some of the deeper color of green and ultramarine under the trees for shadows. While still wet pull up the taller grasses using shades of yellow ochre, VanDyke Brown and sap green. At the base of the grasses drop in some deeper shades and pull up into the grasses. Allow to dry.
Wet the trail area and using a round brush float in shades of gray and brown, letting some of the white paper show through in areas for highlights. Allow to dry. Using the same colors as the trail, spatter the area with paint to indicate rock, gravel, etc. Don’t forget to cover areas of your painting that you do not want spattered.
For final touches, add a few pieces of tall grass. Allow to dry. Using a razor blade, scrape in some highlights in the grasses.
Congratulations! Don’t forget to sign your name!
I usually paint in watercolor, but for this trip I chose to use acrylic paints. This was an interesting change for me which I enjoyed immensely. The painting above is one that I painted plein air with my easel set up by the side of a mountain stream.
In this blog, I’ll discuss the challenges in plein air painting as compared to painting in studio.
Where to start?
For additional information or just some interesting reading, check out their site: http://www.arrowmont.org/