View Full Version : Shadows are driving me crazy!?!

11-02-2000, 09:58 AM
I am painting a picture I am very excited about. It is based on a photo I took of a praying mantis on my morning glory vines and leaves. However, the leaves were so magnificent the flowers were shortchanged so I took a picture of morning glories from another location in my yard and now I am trying to combine the two into one good composition. The shadows in the photograph of the leaves are great, but I am falling apart trying to see in my mind's eye where the shadows from the morning glories should fall. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. If this sounds vague and confusing it exactly duplicates the way my mind feels when I try to figure this out. HELP!!! please...

[This message has been edited by catjoe (edited November 02, 2000).]

11-02-2000, 01:06 PM
I know the frustration since I work a lot from photographs that I take...and seldom do I get just the right composition within one photo. Sometimes I take several and combine them into one painting.

I love the image software that allows you to combine photos into a collaged image...and the clone feature is worth its weight in gold! But...before computers...in a time I can hardly remember now...lol

I would sketch out my design based on a photo taking the images I loved from one and establishing the lights and darks on the sketch. Then when I added elements from another photo I could see where the shadows had to fall in combination with the first set of shadows.

For example...do a sketch of your leaves and their shadows. Then using tracing paper (so you can see thru it) sketch out the flowers you want to add to the first sketch...then lay the tracing paper over the first sketch and place the flowers where you like them..
then you can see the flowers and the leaves and the leaf shadows. Considering the direction of the sunlight...your shadows for the flowers will fall across the leaves in the same general directions.

Now if you want to get really technical and I have done this too....set up a light source across the drawing to give you the angle of light...then hold the flower shape away from the sketch and see your shadows. Of course this will fall onto a flat plane and not onto the actual leaves...but it will give you a good idea of direction and patterns.

This is really a lot simpler than I can state it...lol.