View Full Version : WIP - step by step: Mountain Town

04-04-2018, 03:55 PM
I like making up scenes, use my imagination. Start off pretty rough, just slopping around on a 16 x 20 canvas with watered-down ivory black. This is almost embarrassingly rough, but it's a Sunday (about 2 weeks ago) and I'm just having fun. :wave:

04-04-2018, 03:59 PM
Here's the 2nd step, just very rough color to give me an idea of what colors I want to work with. In my imaginary town, these folks are pretty rural and conservative, so nothing too wild. Everything is still pretty rough, a lot of very crooked structures in there. No problem, we'll get the construction crew out there and repair everything later. :wave:

04-04-2018, 03:59 PM
Nice, looking forward to seeing this develop.

04-04-2018, 04:02 PM
In stage three, I start to use a bit of dappling (pointillism) and you'll see more of this with time. Also brightening things up, getting some contrast going, putting in more branches. At this point, everything is an underpainting, all of this will be buried under layers. That's what makes acrylics so fun for me, any mistakes can be covered quickly. :wave:

04-04-2018, 04:07 PM
Here we are at stage 4. Lots of dots! Maybe too many? I dunno... but that house way back there is starting to really bug me. Why? Because it's bad composition... it's right in the middle. I need to call the house movers.

But more and more details are showing up, that crew must have been working while I wasn't looking. I like the "painterly" look this has, but it's still a might sloppy for my tastes. I need to get out the level! :clear:

04-04-2018, 04:13 PM
I moved the house! It was bugging me far too much.

OK, so at this stage, I needed to work out the foliage without using paint because that would be very hard to fix. I painted a few here and there and then Photoshop helped me add some more without actually painting. While I was at it, I added some birds, people and a car from photo reference. So, while this isn't totally painted, it shows my thinking and what I'm planning on doing. Lots of repairs going on in this version. I think the foliage is way too green, but I can handle that later with the right mix of paint. Up next is the final!:angel:

04-04-2018, 04:20 PM
Final Stage:

I painted in all the foliage and birds, people and a car using a printout of the Photoshop version as reference. Is that a Peugeot? I dunno!

The town looked abandoned without the people, like some kind of freaky Twilight Zone story. Added some more details and straightened out a TON of lines, added shadows and highlights to all the windows, fixed some other problems as well. It's not exactly perfect (some proportions are off as are perspectives in many cases), but it's been fun and I like doing these "storybook" paintings. For starting with nothing, I'd give it about a 5 on a 10 scale.

Hope everyone enjoyed the WIP!


04-04-2018, 04:58 PM
I really enjoyed this and probably learned something. Thanks for sharing your methods.

04-04-2018, 07:17 PM

Katie Black
04-04-2018, 07:46 PM
I LOVED that! like yourself, I enjoy making up scenes.

I think it is just wonderful, and I really enjoy the pointillism in this painting. :clap:

04-04-2018, 07:49 PM
Somehow you managed to take the scene from wi yer to spring to summer. I noticed the birds disappeared in summer. Thought must have been just passing through 🙂. Wonderful WIP. Thanks for sharing.

04-04-2018, 07:51 PM
Really beautiful. I love all the textures, great style.

04-04-2018, 09:21 PM
Dick, thanks, I hope so, I learn something every time I do these as well!

Thanks, TM

Thank you Katie, these get me through that "what should I be painting?" phase.

Gayle, the birds are there in the last shot too, 6 of them, just hard to see in that shot. Thanks for the compliment!

Thanks, Phranque... glad you enjoyed it. :-)

04-05-2018, 01:49 AM
This is a wonderful, and the transformation is intriguing.

04-05-2018, 05:20 AM
Thanks very much, Colin!

04-05-2018, 10:26 AM
That's really impressive that you created this scene out of your head. Very nicely done and interesting to see the stages. I think it might have been better without the trees in front though, I feel that they are trying to block me from looking at the beautiful buildings.

04-05-2018, 10:48 AM
Lovely little town and it looks so peaceful!
Thanks for WIP I enjoyed looking at it.

04-05-2018, 11:24 AM
Thanks, Michelle.... and I agree. I alternately like them/hate them... and I should have reduced them to just a few branches on the sides, but once they got started I couldn't stop them! (I love trees, what can I say?) BTW, they cover up some of the architectural problems nicely. I figure for a "practice painting", they are a lesson well learned.

Thanks, Dianna, appreciate your kind words.

04-06-2018, 10:25 AM
I know, a well placed tree or shrub has solved many problems for me. :D Maybe you'll decide to do something like this again and next time try just putting trees on the sides, and add some growing in the town among the buildings.

Charlie's Mum
04-06-2018, 11:41 AM
I really like this and don't mind the trees because it's a high viewpoint and I'm looking from my high window into the town ....... I can see neighbours there just waking this sleepy town up ....... quiet, not much traffic heading towards the bridge and into the countryside - Sunday morning, get the papers, laze the day away!

Lovely WIP Keith - thanks a lot for sharing the process.:)

09-24-2018, 02:02 AM
Hey man, this is magic! I've been trying to learn more about pointillist techniques - how to develop a work from blank canvas to finished product and this is exactly what you've done. Love it. I like the intricacies of pointillism and I can just imagine the satisfaction that comes from merging all those points of colour into a beautiful piece of art. Good onya!

09-24-2018, 05:53 AM
Thanks, Maureen and bjmcm!