View Full Version : Street Scene with ArchesóDEMO

Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 10:00 AM
This year's challenge is that Andy wants me to teach him how to paint :eek:
He wants to learn different techniques as the year goes on, so that is the reason for this demo.

The first painting that I chose is one that Lulu put in the Wash a few days ago.........


I chose this painting because of the arches in it.

So begins the first lesson................DRAWING OUT ARCHES.

[Note: To preserve the continuity of instruction, this thread has been edited to remove posts that did not pertain to the technique being demonstrated. The Moderators]

Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 10:06 AM
This exercise can be used for drawing arches or bridges.

First I`m going to do an arch looking straight on.

1, start off by drawing a square.


2. draw diagonal lines from corner to corner.


3. where the diagonals meet is the centre point, imagine a line that goes from the centre point to the top of the arch.


4. decide how deep you want the arch to be, and mark a point on either side of the arch


5. now draw a curve from each point to the centre point at the top of your arch, this should give you a perfect arch shape. Now rub out guide lines.


Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 10:18 AM
As you can see from the ref picture the arches are going away from you so you`ve got the problems of perspective to deal with.

this is how you do that.

1. draw in your vanishing point, then 2 linesó one for the top of your arches, the 2nd for the bottom.

You then draw a third line. This is going to be for the depth of your curves.


2. Now put in your vertical lines. Don`t forget that as things are more distant they look closer together, so your verticals will be closer together.
At this stage you also want to draw in the diagonals, from corner to corner for each arch.


3. Mark the centre point directly above where each diagonal crosses.
In this case, my vanishing point is to the right, so the centre point moves closer to the right the further away it gets.

Do as you did before and draw the curve from each marker up to the centre point. You can then follow the inside edge to show the inside that would be visible from this angle.


Don`t forget to rub out the guide lines :rolleyes:

Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 10:30 AM
Now to get on with the painting itself.

1. I have used Arches rough paper, 15x11". I always start by taping the paper to the board with masking tape.

2. Draw out the picture.


3. I then turned my board upsidedown (because I am doing a wet in wet sky, I don`t want the water to dribble over the rooftops).

I then wet the paper. While this is still very wet, I add lemon yellow, then azo yellow. I then add touches of pinks and purples. As you add each colour, use more pigment with each layer, so that the mix is less and less watery as you layer the paint up.

If you don`t do this, you will end up either with cauliflowers or washing the colours off or it will blend to mud.

Whenever you paint this sort of sky ALWAYS put a band of pink or purple between the yellows and the blue otherwise you will get a green sky :eek:


4. while this is still wet, you can dab out some clouds with scrunched up tissue.

Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 10:40 AM
5. now I`m going to move onto the buildings and stone work, paths etc.
I used burnt sienna (bs) Raw sienna (rw) and ultramarine blue (ub). These colours were mixed together in a very watery mix, and once they started drying off a bit, I added varying mixes of the same three colours, here and there, so that I started to get some signs of texture and some beginnings of shadows underneath the arches. All This was done wet in wet.


This is it dried so that you can see the subtle difference.


Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 10:53 AM
6. Then next part I did was the trees.......I dabbed on yellowy green (lemon yell, and ub mixed) on one side and on the other side of each tree I dabbed on a stronger deeper mix of the same two colours. Then I wet a brush then dabbed off the excess water and blended the two colours together.

7. I used the same three colours as before ( ub/bs/rs) to do the roof tops.
I varied the mixes of these colours, making them more bs for the terracotta type colours that make up the rooftops .


8. The next step was to darken the colour in the doorway. This was dark at the top then lighter at the bottom.

To do this, I painted in my dark colour, (ub/bs, and paynes grey (pg)) Then wet my brush and blended the colour to fade as it gets closer to the bottom. I did the same for the shadows below the roofs.


Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 11:01 AM
9. Next decide where the shadows are going to be. Use the same mix as previous only darker, slightly change the colour to suit the colour of the building.

Paint in the shutters on the main building (I think this building looks like a smiley face..lol.)

10. at the base of this building, you need to do some dry brush work to show the texture of the brick work.

To do dry brush work, you need quite a dark mix of the previous building colours, this mix should be quite dry, then you hold your brush almost flat to the paper, and scrape it along. The tooth of the paper will just take off a bit of the paint from the side of the bristles. http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/05-Oct-2005/13042-2005_1002Week1step0010.JPG

As you can see from the photo, the brush is almost flat.

Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 11:10 AM
I forgot to mention, I used a scrap of paper to mask off the rest of the painting.

10. Add a few details to the main building, i.e., raw sienna around the door, stripes on the shutters.......I painted these almost black then dabbed off with a tissue to soften.


11. I laid a raw sienna wash over the arches, brickwork, and walls, then
I blended in a deeper colour for under the arches.

Then I started putting in the windows with ub, pg,bs. Painted on, then dabbed off in places.

12. I then brushed on some texture onto the wall on the left hand side, near the stairs.

I forgot to draw in the roofs on the right hand side, so I have now drawn these in and laid on some washes as before. http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/05-Oct-2005/13042-2005_1002Week1step0015.JPG

Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 11:22 AM
13. the next part I painted was the steps and the road, I also added a few details.........the edge of the pavement, more colours under the arches.


14. I added a deeper colour under the arches yet again. Near the top, the arches are darker, then they get lighter nearer the bottom. So I put on the deepest colour, then blended it down with clear water, as it got nearer the bottom.


15. I next added the final details to the rooftops, and added a rs wash over the roof of archway and on the right hand wall. I did this to bring it forward and warm it up a bit.

The final .........


The colours in this photo are a better match than previous photos.

I hope this isn`t too hard to follow Andy...........I`ll look forward to seeing your version next week. Anybody else who wants to try this painting, will be most welcome. :D

Kate Mc
10-05-2005, 11:28 AM
Sharon, you've just got my mentor point for today. AND I'm rating this thread.

What a wonderful class!



10-05-2005, 11:42 AM
you've got my vote for Mentor today too Sharon!!

clear precise directions and excellent photos to support.....a great lesson!!!

can't wait to see Andy have a go at it:)


10-05-2005, 11:51 AM
Me too, Great lesson Sharon, one more to add to my to do list, really like how you do this. Andy should be so very pleased with these lessons, very informative, interesting and making him a DVD is just super as he can watch and rewatch in case he misses something. What a neat thing to do to help him and all of us You do deserve the Mentor point today.

10-05-2005, 12:09 PM
WONDERFUL, Sharon!! This is just so exciting...
I am drawing this one off as soon as I finish Char's
Floral ... Where can I get a high res image, Please?

Jo in Georgia

10-05-2005, 12:16 PM
I have also rated this thread:)


Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 12:20 PM
Thankyou everyone, I never expected this sort of reaction. :o
Thanks for the mentor points too, I really appreiciate them.
Jo, If you want a higher res of the ref photo, you`d probably have to ask LULU it was her photo I used.
If it`s a higher res of my finished painting I will email it to you if you pm me your email addy

Cattleprod Karl
10-05-2005, 12:34 PM
Sharon - wonderful thread. Thanks for taking time to share the photos and your instructions. This sort of step-by-step is really helpful for a newbie such as myself.

10-05-2005, 01:10 PM
Sharon... you are really thoughtful to do this for not only Andy, but us too!!! Thank you... Your directions are clear and well laid out... AND, your painting is gorgeous!!!

Rating and Mentor Point from me too!!!

10-05-2005, 02:08 PM
Hey !what can I say :) Sharon your a cracker just hope I can do all your hard work justice. I got a mentor point to give hann't decided what to do with it ,you just as well have it spose. No questions as its so very well explained but I'm not here next week until Sunday 16th. Anyone else in??

10-05-2005, 02:41 PM
Not in the challenge, Andy, but I have asked for the photo to try it a little later. If this is only the first lesson ... just think of all the wonderful informative lessons we are going to be lucky enough to share in...

Jo in Georgia

Cattleprod Karl
10-05-2005, 02:48 PM
What exactly IS the challenge? Did I miss a thread somewhere? I'm so confused! Argh!

10-05-2005, 03:24 PM
Thank you, Sharon. You have my Mentor point today too! It is the first I've given! I live in a little hilltop medieval town with the most beautiful loggiata - have been avoiding trying to paint the arches - but not anymore! :D


Sharon Douglas
10-05-2005, 03:54 PM
Thanks for looking and commenting Karl, Char, Jo and ANDY.
Robyn, thankyou too, I`m glad to have helped.

Karl the weekly challenge started last year.

When we all met up at Kington, the joke for the week was that Andy never finished a painting all week.
All week Andy and I kept joking about it, (mainly me taking the mickey) so to get his own back Andy challenged me to paint a picture a week for a year.
This challenge finished last week, but we decided to carry it on, but with a bit of a twist, the twist was that Andy wanted me to show him how to paint, for the year.
My challenge for the year is to try and teach Andy a lesson each week..........Andys challenge is trying to understand my instructions......lol.
I hope this answers your question Karl.

10-05-2005, 04:17 PM
Well, I think it's a wonderful idea ... and if/when I get my
Italian scene painted, I'll post it so you can see you've
taught more than just Andy :D :D :D

Jo in Georgia

10-05-2005, 09:14 PM
What a fabulous Demo.

If no-one has done it yet I shall send it to Rich for the Demo sticky!!!!

Thanks Sharon.

I have rated your thread 5***** and given you a mentor point!!

Lynn Quinn
10-07-2005, 11:14 PM
Great thread! Thanks for showing all of us how you did this! :clap: :clap:

10-08-2005, 08:08 AM

WOW! WOW! and WOW! againóthis is fantastic. I LOVE architectural paintings and this is a doozy! Buildings, arches, streets, sky, did I say WOW!

Thank you so much for taking the time to share this with all of us.

Definitely worth a Merit Point (already gave away my Mentor Point for the day. ;)) and a rating!

JJ, good idea to notify Rich about it too.


Sharon Douglas
10-10-2005, 11:11 AM
Sorry for not thanking you

Jo, I can`t wait to see yours.

JJ :o Your too kind.

MLQ, thanks for looking, and replying.

Sylvia, yes you did say WOW!!! thankyou, thankyou, thankyou.
Did I say thankyou :evil:

Sorry I didn`t say thankyou earlier, I haven`t been getting my notifications again :rolleyes:

10-10-2005, 07:28 PM
Not at all.

Your Demo is in the Learning Demos' under PERSPECTIVE.. Easy for folks to find..:) :clap:

07-07-2008, 07:17 AM
What's the location?

Most probably Italy. Could it be Florence?


07-07-2008, 08:27 AM
Just another person who wants to say thank you for a great lesson

07-10-2008, 09:15 AM
Sharon, terrific demo, I notice its about the easiest to follow that I've seen sure will try it. Don't know how to rate nor give mentor points but you've got mine. Thanks very much. James J.

07-10-2008, 09:32 AM
I'm so glad new people are re-discovering this wonderful teaching Demo by Sharon.

The Merit/Mentor buttons have disappeared since the Great Migration, perhaps they'll be reinstituted some day, but you can still give the thread a Ratingógo to the blue bar at the top of the page where it says "Ratings" and open it, you can then award the thread as many stars as you think it deserves. :D


07-10-2008, 10:25 AM
Wow, this was great:clap: I can't wait until lunchtime, so I can practice drawing the arches. (I don't know why they think I should work at work!:o Thanks so much for the wonderful information

Laura D
07-13-2008, 05:13 AM
Absolutely amazing Sharon - of course! Wow to the nth degree!