Wednesday, March 9, 2016

"Storm Brewing" (Waves near the Pier) – Cape Hatteras

 Storm Brewing (Waves near the Pier) – Cape Hatteras

Storm Brewing was painted on location (plein air) while at the Outer Banks of North Carolina.    This was painted rather quickly late one afternoon before an afternoon thunderstorm sent me back inside.    There were already storms not too far out to sea and the water was churning near the pier where the rocks were located.  In this case, the water was mainly a deep green.    The sky was dark with hints of gray mixed in with the white clouds. 

Materials Needed:
140 lb. watercolor paper* or watercolor journal
(I used a journal for these paintings, as I painted while on vacation.)
*Always prepare your paper by using masking tape to secure to a board.

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
Kneaded Eraser

I lightly sketched in the horizon and the rocks and pier.  This was for placement only not for details.  I painted in this order:  sky, rocks/pier, water.    I did, however, pencil in the areas that I wanted to remain white, so that I would not fill in those areas with color. 

Paint in your sky first using a wet on wet technique down to the horizon where the sky meets the water and the rock/pier.  I used layers of color:  gray/blue, strip of white cloud, Cerulean Blue, white cloud, a mix of gray and Windsor blue down to meet the water at the horizon.  Using lots of water and a tissue, drop in your paint across the page and blot up any excess water and paint, creating swirls and clouds.

Allow to dry. 

Use a wash of Van Dyke Brown, Payne’s Gray, and yellow ochre for this section.  I started with a light wash of yellow ochre and then dropped in Payne’s Gray and Van Dyke Brown in various intensities.  Be certain to work around the areas of water and foam.   Allow to dry.  Using a dry brush and Van Dyke brown, paint in some lines for the logs in the pier.  Refer to the photo above and added some darker areas.  

Paint in the ocean using varying shades of green blue mixed from Sap Green and Windsor blue leaving small areas of white to indicate waves.  Adding a touch of sap green to the blue helps separate the sky from the water.  Using a round brush, swirl the paint lightly in the waves to indicate movement.  Allow the ocean to dry.   

If you have trouble painting around the waves and leaving areas of the waves white, masking fluid can be used to mask off the waves while painting the water and then removed after the paint has dried.  You will still need to go back and paint in some shadows in the waves to indicated movement.    If you don’t want to use masking fluid, paint around the white areas and/or use a blade to scrape away some of the once it is dry. 

Check your painting for any details you may want to add.  When satisfied, sign your painting!

Congratulations and Happy Painting!




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