View Full Version : Queen Elizabeth roses ~ WIP

09-13-2007, 02:47 PM
Hi folks
I'm working on this WIP in another painting forum and thought I'd should share it at WetC also. In this first post I will just copy&paste what I've posted there so far which covers three days work...

Any comments opinions critiques are kindly accepted.

Day 1
This is a commissioned work and is 24" x 30" on stretched canvas. My client is an interior designer living in Miami and loves his garden. This painting of Queen Elizabeth roses is to compliment a previous work of 'Peace' roses I've done for him.

I'm working in acrylic and painting the design around the edges. Doing this WIP helps me process my thoughts and plan the overall work better. I also get to use YOU as fresh eyes, so if you see any problem areas that I might have missed please let me know.

To establish the tonal values and organise the shapes correctly I have first applied a grisaille underpainting using a mix of prussian blue, burnt sienna and purple madder. I mix the pigments quite casually on the palette with the brush, letting the colours blend further on the canvas, or not! This creates a rough, but natural look to the overall grisaille. I have given it one layer, except the extreme background behind the foliage which has two.

Note that the upper area of the image is a little dull due to the lighting conditions when the photo was taken. However since looking at this image I can see I have lost some lights in the upper right quarter. Will correct that in the morning. Tomorrow I will begin laying colour.


Day 2
Leaving the blooms till later, today I've been working on the foliage and background adding the first layers of colour.

Here I've used a single layer of lemon yellow over all the foliage and stems and also some background gaps, permanent rose in some of the gaps behind the foliage to suggest background blooms, and ultram. blue to other areas (am unsure of this move at this point, so will review it later in the process). I also added a little burnt sienna to the remaining gaps for added contrast.


A)Now, working only on foliage in the lower left quarter, I begin glazing in a mix of ultram. blue and lemon yellow over the shadow areas.
B)When dry I add glazed areas of permanent rose followed by titan. white over some of the brighter yellow for highlights. Later I'll add glazes of cobalt blue to tone down the brighness and add further dimension.
A ------------------------------B

Day 3
Now here's where I'm up to with this. No colour on the blooms yet as I'm still working the background and not finished there yet. A few more leaves to add glazes to. Most of it covered though, using prussian blue & lemon yellow for a green base, then glazing over areas with perm. rose, titan. white and then cobalt blue. First colour added also to the bud bloom.

Note This image is slightly duller than it should be due to the dullness of the day here today.


So it's day 4 today and I will hopefully finish off around the background foliage and get started on the blooms. There will be tweeking to do on the b/g later after the blooms are in colour.

09-13-2007, 06:45 PM
This is so beautiful I am sure your client will love it!
Thanks for sharing it :)

Margaret 59
09-13-2007, 08:18 PM
Good to see you do another WIP Elaine.
I'm enjoying this as usual.

09-13-2007, 09:31 PM
This is really wonderful! I can hardly wait to see it when it is finished.

09-13-2007, 11:17 PM
Brilliant Elaine, and oh so helpful! Can't wait to see the next installation.

09-14-2007, 11:51 AM
this IS fascinating to watch, Elaine! i have a few friends beginning to learn grisaille but never get the chance to watch the process. thanks for posting this.:) looks great so far!

09-14-2007, 04:08 PM
I love your wips Elaine! It's always fun to watch how people paint. I have never really tried a grisaille underpainting, and I find it really interesting that you chose these three colors to use (prussian blue, burnt sienna and purple madder) I have only seen one basic color used in a grisaille, and I think it's a great idea! It just looks wonderful already!

09-14-2007, 06:16 PM
Thanks for looking in peeps. :thumbsup:

I worked my way around the foliage yesterday tidying things up here and there, tweeking this and that, until I felt ready to work on the blooms. Here's a detail...

Then adding a single glaze of perm. rose mixed with a little titan. white, I covered 90% of the blooms, leaving just the very brightest highlights white. As I went round the top bloom I discovered I'd missed a leaf completely. I must have though it was part of the rose when working the folliage, so you might notice it there looking a tad unfinished yet as it just has it's first glaze of lemon yellow. Will finish it later.


I will work on the top bloom from here and get it close to where I want it finished before the lower one. More updates to come...

09-14-2007, 07:00 PM

So glad you found a good image and can't wait till I can see the finished product...you have such lucky clients, getting such wonderful paintings!!:thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

09-14-2007, 08:47 PM
Amazing already.

09-14-2007, 08:50 PM
It's really looking wonderful. I just love all the shadows in this painting. :) I was so happy to see an update.

09-15-2007, 01:02 AM
Brian Thanks. I had to go searching garden books and the net for images. I came up with this combination of several images.

Thanks Deb and Celeste

I've been a busy beaver today and got a few layers of glazing done on the top bloom. Here is a second layer of colour, using the same perm/rose mixed with titan/white. I mixed different quanities of the two different areas, lighter for highlighted areas and darker for the shadows. Compared to the lower bloom this is looking much smoother now.

When dry I glazed in areas of transparent yellow where the bloom caught the reflected light, then cobalt blue in the shadows. Below is a detail showing the comparison between these layers, from the initial first glaze of perm/rose and titan/white mix, to second glaze of the same, then thirdly adding the yellow and blue.

The yellow glow didn't sit quite right with me so I glazed in some benzimid/orange. Still not sure about this yet but this is how it's looking tonight and all I'm doing for the day. Will decide what's next in the morning.

09-15-2007, 08:13 AM
Well, the orange is looking good to me!

09-15-2007, 08:16 AM
So glad I had a chance to pop in today. This is looking beautiful. The background is very interesting and different.

09-15-2007, 08:38 AM
My dad grew a lot of beautiful roses. Each year we went to one of the big rose grower's place near where we lived. I remember the year he got the Queen Elizabeth rose. It became one of the highlights of his garden.

Your painting is really lovely and developing so beautifully.


09-15-2007, 10:32 AM
Very beautiful!


09-16-2007, 01:33 AM
Well Elaine - you know you are my hero - have gone searching for my fix - looking for an update and yay I've found further gorgeous progress!!!!!!
I am thinking Ben Ho . Nancy Titchbourne here - these have such a delicacy - it is coming along handsomely!!!!!
I am keeping my beedy eye on your progress!!!!!

09-16-2007, 12:57 PM
Oh yes, that blossom is coming alive...so beautiful! :)

Hey Ruth, she's my hero too... :D

09-16-2007, 02:16 PM
Hi Elaine, Your roses are gorgeous! Its really neat (and informative) watching your painting process in the wip. Your foliage really comes alive with the coloring that you use. I can't wait to see the progression. Thanks!:clap:

09-16-2007, 03:20 PM
Morning all :wave:
Didn't do much work yesterday being sunday. Instead my daughter (14) and I went out for some one on one in the morning and had a real nice girly time. Then in the afternoon hubby and I played some tennis with some friends. Was a nice day all round. :thumbsup:
I spend no more than 20mins on the painting, deciding to push back a few leaves by giving them an all over glaze of cobalt blue. This tones them down and puts them more in the shadows. Will be back in the studio today and get started on the lower bloom. Will post an update image tonight.

Thanks Gay Celeste and Cindy:wave:

Sylvia. You will know the QE rose well then. There are none in bloom here right now and I don't know roses well, so my reference is from books and the net. The problem I have is that every thing published is different in colour, every shade from deep crimson pink to a very very pale pink and I am having to guess the real shade for the painting. I hope I have it close. :confused:

Ruth and Deb HERO? Don't be rediculous! Get a grip on reality girls or someone is going to go OTT ...probably ME!!!! :smug: :D

Hey Kym thanks for the comment. Always good to hear a wip is informative. :wave:

09-16-2007, 08:44 PM
Elaine, as usual your work is simply stunning. It is wonderful to see your WIP, it is almost like being in a class!

09-17-2007, 10:56 PM
Thanks Sue

Yours truely adding the second layer of perm/rose and titan/white to the lower bloom. You can see just under my hand the area still left to do.

I then followed with some lem/yellow then cobalt blue as done previously for the top bloom. Havn't added the benz/orange yet. Now this lower bloom is looking too dark and needs more glazing to lighten it so it blends better with the top rose.

Here I added some very light glazing of just titan/white (Note: I could use zinc white as it is a transparent white, and titan/wht is opaque but adding the liquitex medium will create a transparency to ti/wht anyway.) This glazing has lightened the lower rose nicely and brings the two blooms together. When dry I'll add a light glaze of the benz/orange to this bloom where the light reflects among the petals as I did in the upper bloom.

You might also be able to see where I added more glazing of cobalt blue to some of the leaves to push them back further.

So we're almost finished now with probably just one more update to come. The changes from here will be very very subtle and may or may not be noticable on the screen. We shall see ... :wave:

09-18-2007, 02:02 AM
Elaine.....WOW. I didn't realize how big they were until the pix with you in it. I know you said, but it didn't click how big the bottom rose really was. This is really terrific. Thank you for letting us watch over your shoulder.


Laura D
09-18-2007, 03:18 AM
:clap: :clap: :clap: :thumbsup:
:heart: :wave:

09-18-2007, 04:19 AM
I'll add my Wow... to this painting demo also.


09-18-2007, 04:53 AM
Simply Magnificent!!!!!!

09-18-2007, 10:56 AM
Too funny Elaine :D
Gosh the colors that you choose for the glaze just look so good. So amazing :)

09-18-2007, 03:44 PM

09-18-2007, 06:10 PM
Thanks guys :)

Ok here is the FINAL CUT (...unless you see tweeking that needs doing) I have added the benz/orange and also some more subtle glazing in titan/white done here and there to correct areas that were bothering me.
Any critiques are welcomed

'Queen Elizabeth'
24" x 30" stretched canvas

...and as it looks on a wall. (This is the peice of wall where all my work hangs for a day or two before varnishing, where I sit with a wine in hand and stare at it looking for any tweeking that needs doing.)

09-18-2007, 07:16 PM
Very fine work Elaine. Love the Michaelangelo sketch on the wall too.
Hope your client appreciates all the great work. Plus they get a great piece of art too.

Margaret 59
09-18-2007, 08:27 PM
Triple Wows, Elaine.

09-18-2007, 10:04 PM
Omnipaint...you da best!!! :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

Seriously Elaine, your work is exceptional...one of these days you're going to hit the big time...and well deserved too!!...(just remember us little people when it happens though !!)

You are also exceptional in the fact that you are so willing to share your techniques and experience....although I'm not an acrylic painter, I'm sure that many are...... and as such, are gaining so much through your generosity and unselfish attitude....you are one hell of a Lady Elaine!!!...and deserve some sort of accolade ( or allocade, as Banxy would say)

Keep up the good work!!:clap: :clap: :clap:

Your friend


09-19-2007, 07:10 AM
I think the background on this one has a lovely stained glass effect!

09-19-2007, 07:31 AM
It's a wonderful painting. It really looks great hanging on the wall.:thumbsup:

09-19-2007, 12:49 PM
very lovely, Elaine! this has a romantic feel to it and looks great on your wall.

09-19-2007, 03:06 PM
Audrey thanks. You have a good eye spotting the Michelangelo on my wall from that angle.

Brian. What can I say?!! Actually you already know the answer to that. I have all ready said it! A heartfelt thanks!

Margaret, Gayle, kmb & Billie thanks for looking in.

09-19-2007, 03:32 PM
You've certainly captured that gorgeous pure pink that I remember. My dad's QE plant grew quite tall (he had a green thumb) and was usually covered with blossoms and buds on long stems.

Your painting is beautiful. I like how you hang it on the wall to think about for a bit before declaring it finished. I put my work on a shelf in my office because I like to see it when I come in after being out of the room for a while.



09-19-2007, 06:48 PM
I really enjoy seeing photos of your paintings hanging on the wall, it really shows the whole effect! This has really turned out so beautiful, and the background has faded into the background, and the roses have taken the stage :)

09-20-2007, 12:15 AM
Absolutely gorgeous!

09-20-2007, 07:40 AM
The final result is simply stunnning Elaine - the roses are just perfect - full of light - there are so many areas i love in the petals - the glazes have given such fab additional form and depth.
I'm sure the guy who commissioned this is going to be completely rapt - enjoy that glass of wine!!!!!

Terry Wynn
09-20-2007, 08:12 AM
Hi, Elaine,

Thanks so much for doing this as a WIP. Much appreciated and as others stated you are very generous in detailing your steps.

The painting is lovely, gorgeous, oh, well, :clap: :clap: :clap:

I rated your thread and hope others will also!

Congratulations on creating such beauty.


Charlie's Mum
09-20-2007, 04:47 PM
I've rated the thread too - so hope others will also!
All I can say is "Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh" - and I hope he's paying you plenty because, if it were mine, I'd not want to part with it!

Thanks for the very informative WIP Elaine - a good teaching ref for the future:D

PS - I love this, and the colour is good - just like the QE's I grew in my last garden! :D

09-20-2007, 05:57 PM
Stunning finish Elaine. It looks fantastic on the wall. 5 stars for this wonderful WIP thread

09-20-2007, 07:55 PM
This is absolutely fabulous!! I love seeing your WIPs!! :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

09-21-2007, 09:48 AM
I don't know what it means to rate a thread but I give you a hundred gold stars and a blue ribbon for this painting! It's gorgeous!


09-21-2007, 03:35 PM
WOW thank you all so much for the great feedback, and also the rating. You are all too kind.

Sylivia & Maureen I'm so pleased you can confirm the colour is right, because I wasn't absolutely sure if I was on target, with all the differing ref images I had.

Charlie's Mum
09-21-2007, 03:38 PM
ABA - go to the blue bar at the top, click on Rating and vote :D

It's a way of seeing quickly if a thread is worth looking at - the members decide :D

09-21-2007, 04:32 PM
So this is where you've been hiding!!! Your work is a joy to view Elaine, the guy is going to be so thrilled with this.

09-21-2007, 07:45 PM
just found this and glad i did !!! .... absolutely top job .... truly inspirational!! ... :thumbsup:

09-23-2007, 08:07 AM
Lovely painting I am sure your buyer is going to enjoy it for many year to come!

09-24-2007, 09:26 AM
Just Perfect.....