Friday, April 27, 2012

New Painting (post #8)

This is Friday morning and I stayed up way too late to work on my painting last night (this is my attempt at recording the progress of a new painting...what I think about, how I do it).

My thought process as I started the evening of painting:

1.  Based on my Dura-Lar test in my earlier post (about the sky options), I'm going to use yellow and coral tones (and reflections in the water).  The water area should be darker and somewhat"dirtier" than the sky.  (The reason I'm not going with the option of blue or violet is that I felt the tree masses would not show up against it well enough.)

2.  Secondly, I'm going to remove the masking fluid from the pampas grass and start applying paint into the areas I feel need it.  Sometimes that means into some individual blades, and other times it means treating a whole section to a swathe of paint with a larger brush, in order to tone down what doesn't need to be grabbing my attention.

Tip:  When you're ready to remove your masking fluid, wash your hands first so that no oils from your skin are transferred to the paper.  I took a picture to show you how I hold my rubber eraser when I use it to remove the masking fluid.  You may also use your thumb(s) but you'd end up with a major callus or two, considering how much I used on this painting.  After I think I've removed all of it, I take my fingers and move them gently across the area, inch by inch (with the balls of your fingernails or jewelry please).  If there's any masking fluid left, you'll feel it and should remove it.

How I hold my rubber eraser to remove masking fluid

Here's what it looks like at this stage....

The next things I did were:

1.  Removed all of the masking fluid except in the water...I wanted to go darker in the water and correct some of my reflections.
2.  Painted the plumes of the pampas grass (except for the two on the right side which I still have masking fluid on...I'm not yet sure if I'm done with the water around them, so I'm keeping my options open at this point).  Tried to keep a light touch on the plumes so that they look fuzzy.
3.  I painted the clump of grass...tried to treat it as a "whole", giving it a rounded form while allowing some of the blades to stand on their own.  Can you tell the difference from the one above?  p.s.  this lower image looks warmer than the's actually truer to the real colors of the painting.  All previous shots were taken during daylight hours, in the shade.  This one was taken at midnight last night, in my studio, with a flash.  I'm surprised it turned out to be the closer version, but then I never pretended to know anything about photography!

I'm now painting the water darker.  I want the water at the bottom to be more grounded.  I also will paint into the trees in the middle ground on the right and give more shape and form to the distant tree bank and reflections.  They look a little unfinished compared to the information in the middle ground trees.

Can you believe it?  I think I might be done!  I've signed it in the bottom right corner, and now the next step: off to the professional photographer's to get a great shot of it for my portfolio!  Here it is, using my own camera...  Thanks for taking the time to follow along with me.  It's nice to talk to you about art!