View Full Version : Classroom Thread - Symbols Practice (Skies, rocks, trees, mountains etc)
03-12-2007, 08:32 AM
I have been practicing painting clouds, mountains and trees and my plan is to practise more landscape symbols such as rocks and rivers. If anyone wants to practice along with me, feel free to post your practice work here. :D Also, comments/critiques, helpful hints are more than welcomed!
Here is my first one this morning
03-12-2007, 09:24 AM
This is beautiful!
03-12-2007, 09:37 AM
Wonderful sense of serenity......:thumbsup:
I love painting clouds! Well done, Ann.
03-12-2007, 10:19 AM
Hi Ann: It looks great. Very well done. I am glad to see you posted something missed seeing your work. Please post more of it. Jan
03-12-2007, 10:27 AM
Everything is really well done. I always have trouble with trees and branches.
03-12-2007, 10:57 AM
Love the clouds!
03-12-2007, 10:59 AM
You know who is the KING of Trees and clouds? Bob Ross! God rest... His series, the Joy of Painting still runs on PBS on Cable and I record it often. Man, smack-smack,smack... boom, a tree! He's got a certain technique for painting clouds with a fan brush... I'm not sure if it's an oil thing or I'm just screwing it up but, it looks so easy and hasn't been for me. He gave the best advice on painting trees with a flat brush, "go in at a slight downward angle and push hard enough on the brush to 'bend the limbs of the tree'. He always did clouds wet on wet and when I try it, I get a mess. Any advice on this? Favorite brushes to try doing clouds and trees?
I love the way idcrisis55 has used the dip to create the illusion of roundness in the field of vision. Very smooth. Hey, you know whom else does very fast, very efficient, very nice landscapes and seascapes? Frank Clarke of Simply Painting. He's available at the local Library although the video quality kind of sucks. He also has an excellent website www.simplypainting.com. I don't recommend joining though because I can't get logged back on and there is NO tech support!! I had no choice but to get my money back through my bank. My ISP may be blocking email from Ireland. I don't know but it made me quite angry over the whole thing. Anyway, take a look at the free stuff and consider checking out the Simply Painting DVDs from the Library.
03-12-2007, 11:16 AM
I'd like to know how you did the clouds? Right now, I'm doing a study of clouds, just clouds in the sky at sunset where it is the most fiery of colours. Clouds aren't as easy as it looks.
How did you do it, brushwork/technique wise?
03-12-2007, 11:37 AM
Thanks everyone of you! The practice is based on what Jerry Yarnell showed me last week in class. One tip he said is when painting bare trees don't put the branches in where they branch off but start from the bottom of the tree and paint up and out, every time. It takes practice following the previous strokes of the tree trunk and lifting the brush so the lines for the tiny limbs are thin and delicate. As you can see, I need more. :D
Now is anyone else going to join in painting clouds or certain type trees or rocks or hands, arms, feet??? It would be fun to have company doing this!
03-12-2007, 11:43 AM
We cross posted. :)
Clouds - Paint your background sky color then take a flat bristle brush, mix up the cloud color, then take a glob on the end of the brush and flap it on the canvas. Now turn the brush to the side and working the paint dry brush it out until you get a smooth blend and areas will look like shadows in the cloud. Then go to the next area where you want a cloud and do the same thing. Try it and see if it works for you! :D Don't forget to thank Jerry Y. because it is all his skill and techniques that he showed me. I would love to take figurative classes from him too, but first, landscapes.
P.S. I used gesso instead of white paint and made sure the gesso/paint mixture was creamy almost thick, using water until I got the consistency I wanted. Don't go thin and runny with the water either or it won't work. Oh, and Jerry always dips his hake brush in water and wets down the canvas before painting.
03-12-2007, 12:22 PM
This is a good idea. I might do some cloud practice as well (I have no experience :p)
Was that one from life, or your imagination?
03-12-2007, 12:35 PM
My imagination. Pick a photo and try it. :D For trees, I am going to use a photo or real life, as I want to try to learn to do them so they read trees or somewhat realistically.
Hi Ann, very beautiful clouds, I couldn't paint clouds either nor do trees.
Thanks for the tip and going to practise the moment I have time but need to read slowly again. :)
03-12-2007, 05:50 PM
Sounds like you had fun Ann .... and came away with some good tips.
May I suggest you share your colour choices too? .... if people join in, this will make a good Clasroom thread :thumbsup:
Trees - for fine branches folks - use a rigger in the manner Ann has described - it's long hairs and fine shape will give lovely fine feathery lines as you lift it off the canvas.
03-12-2007, 07:05 PM
i like the clouds- can you tell me what you are painting on Ann ?
03-12-2007, 07:50 PM
Thanks Dewi, Maureen & Zooms.
Zooms, this was practice on a Fredrix canvas board which is fine for practice pieces and I've also done this on stretched canvas.
Maureen, for the study posted I used Ultramarine Blue, Alizarin Crimson, Pyrrole Orange and gesso in the sky. I painted, using "X" strokes, the orange mixed with gesso on the bottom, then painted the ultramarine blue and alizarin crimson straight into fresh. wet gesso using a Hake brush. Then as the two began to meet I very lightly, laying the wiped Hake brush almost flat blended back and forth into the two areas of color.
The fir trees are Hookers Green, Burnt Sienna, and Ultramarine Violet and sometimes a bit of Ultramarine Blue. The bare tree is a mix of ultramarine blue and burnt sienna or burnt umber. The grass is a mix of the same colors adding cad. yellow medium or light (can't remember which :D).
I'm glad you mentioned the rigger because what I used is a #4 sable rigger. The sable will hold more fluid color than a synthetic as I understand it. I have yet to get the smaller limbs to look fine and delicate.
Dewi, hope you get some free time soon whether to do symbols or to just paint!
03-12-2007, 08:38 PM
Hey, I had wanted to practice these landscape tidbits myself, how timely!! I'll join in- so clouds are the first one? I'll do some clouds tomorrow and post. Glad to have the thread, it's always more fun to do these things in a group!
03-12-2007, 09:15 PM
Cool! Glad you are joining in, Polygon. :D I started another practice piece of a foliage tree. Yuk, it turned out terrible as you will see but decided to post the these too as it is all learning. I tried doing a plain sky using ultramarine blue/gesso at the top then cobalt turquoise/gesso on the rest. The greens are cobalt turquoise, hookers green, Brilliant Green, Cad. yellow medium. Then added some ultramarine blue, purple and burnt sienna. Oh in one spot I added Pyrrole red and mixed it in with the purple.
Then went in and worked more on the sky, added more trees and a bit of road. It looks like a story book painting and not like a real place. :( More practice looking at a real tree is needed, looking at mass tones and shapes.
03-12-2007, 11:30 PM
Ann, both practice pieces look great. Thanks for sharing.
03-13-2007, 04:39 AM
Thanks Brian! The trees aren't looking like I would like but maybe with time and lots of practice. :)
03-13-2007, 10:58 AM
I would like to see this as a classwork thread. I think it would be fun and helpful. I can always use the help. Jan
03-13-2007, 11:44 AM
Hi Jan, I hope you join in too. No painting yet today but hopefully I will later.
03-13-2007, 05:15 PM
Well Ann, I was in awe of your clouds yesteday and today after my experiments I am in TOTAL awe. Also, your tree came out great! I see what you mean about a storybook feel but it's a fine tree, that means you're almost there.
So, I hope I don't scare anyone with my clouds. I went to the RIL and copied lots of images, thinking I'd start with cumulus, move to cirrus, dab on an overcast, a storm, a sunrise, a sunset....
Oh, well, I got a little stuck on cumulus as you can see. I used to be reasonably good at cumulus clouds in watercolour, and figured it wouldn't take long to figure it out in acrylics... :rolleyes: :lol: :eek: :eek:
Oh my god, these first four are hideous. These are on canvas textured paper, which I've decided I don't like:
1) Oops, I guess I should have wet that paper a bit. And no, those rescue dabs on the fringes did not exactly work... :rolleyes:
2) OK, wetting helps with the shadows... but duh, maybe it would help on the cloud edges too? OK, leaving a big white blob in the sky for the cloud is not working...
3) A bit of an improvement, except now I know sponging isn't the fix (lower right hand corner cloud, can hardly see it). I kind of like the upper right hand cloud, although I immediately abandon that technique...
4) better, better... if you only look at the lower right hand cloud! :lol: And somehow on this one I forgot how to lay a graded wash. Oh, I am glad for this practice because I really do suck...
I'll post the ones that kinda worked in the next post, I think the attachment limit is four?
03-13-2007, 05:21 PM
OK, so I did finally have some success! Lots of room for polishing but considering where I started out today I did fine (pats self on back... however hair torn out in frustration of earlier attempts is still lying on floor...)
I'm back on my dollar store canvas board, works sooooooo much better! The earlier ones would not have been much better on this board but it really is much easier to work on.
5) these are a little too "canned", but I'll take 'em! Coming along.
6) These need to be whiter, and the shadows go up a bit too far (would work though if the clouds were whiter, right now they're too thin for this dark a shadow), but I like the looseness of these.
So, for these I laid the (slightly) graded wash, let it dry, then laid down water and painted into it. 2 layers for clouds and 2 layers for shadows.
Critique and tips are very welcome! I know I've got a long way to go...
03-13-2007, 05:39 PM
Hi Polygon, great to see your practice work. I liked especially #'s 3 and 5 because there are less hard edges and you dry brushed more into the background. Clouds are fluff, soft looking with actually very few hard edges and often are layered to create a cloud composition. The nice thing is one can go back and very lightly add lights to the top edges to give even more dimension to the clouds.
If you want, we can pick a cloud photo and we can all practice that one to see how the clouds are formed against the backdrop of the sky. What do you think? Would you like to do that? If so, post a photo here in this thread and I will work alongside you on it as we both learn. I will try to do it in steps and take photos along the way so you can see.
03-13-2007, 06:27 PM
I would love that, Ann! I just popped over to the RIL, difficult to choose one that's difficult enough without being too cluttered and difficult- would this (http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=69922&si=cloud&what=allfields) one be appropriate? It's got overlap, and a mix of large and small, with some sky showing too.
03-13-2007, 06:38 PM
Peoples - don't forget to rate the thread if you find it useful :D
Ann - I'll edit the title to include 'Classroom thread' if that's OK with you.
I can always re-edit if you're not happy ;)
Glad you're doing this Poly - you really are a hoot with your self-crits too :D Nice!
03-13-2007, 06:45 PM
Thanks Maureen, that would be great! Just a reminder that anyone that wants to join in, feel free to post your studies and comments here! The more the merrier and the more we learn from you too!
Polygon, that photo will work fine. Now one thing as artist that we can do is leave out or add to. So If you find all the clouds overwhelming, leave some of them out. Pick one that you would love to learn the shape, values, colors, blends, and work toward that.
Another thing one might want to do is take a photo of each step in your painting process. That will help one to see what worked, and maybe what didn't.
Most of all I hope we each have fun and get that thrill when finally, something clicks into place. :D
03-14-2007, 01:20 AM
I haven't post for a while, kind of busy preparing for my soon to be newborn son. Anyway, I have a half painted landscape which have clouds and trees:lol: I pop in once a while to see what you guys and gals are up to. At least I'm not a newbie anymore, I got my one shiny star :D :D :D .
03-14-2007, 01:22 AM
Duh, I forgot the image.http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/14-Mar-2007/77819-landscape.jpg
Hiya Ann - this is a great idea - I've not really ever got my head around landscape 'language.' This is so informative - can definitely see Yarnell's influence on your trees and love the cloud advice - will be trying it out on a painting soon.
Polygon - OMG - you are so funny - completely relate to your determination to learn how to do it - keep it coming!!!!
Fisherman very nice scene - almost fantasy like. I really like the work on the hills - this is a popular style.
03-14-2007, 08:31 AM
Polygon, I gessoed front and back a used 1/4 sheet of watercolor paper last night which should be dry by now. :D So I will get started this morning. Have you begun working from the photo you chose?
Fisherman, how cool, a soon be born son! I love the palette you used in your painting and the fresh look of the painting. Maybe you will share how you did your foliage trees?
Ruth, maybe you will join us as we are all trying to learn landscape symbols and the different ways of painting them.
The one person's work that has the most tremendous, atmospheric clouds is Arnold Lowery. Check out his threads here in the Acrylic Forum and in the Watercolor Forum. I will try to get some time to search the threads for some of his work and post some links.
One thing about it, our attempts at painting clouds may not always be what we want first time around but being acrylics we can go back and adjust. That is what I keep telling myself anyway as I learn to paint clouds and other symbols too. :lol:
03-14-2007, 10:50 AM
Steps painted this morning, first five (5) posted as attachments :)
03-14-2007, 10:54 AM
Next four (4) posted as attachments. These photos show the very first steps and I am not concerned about the paper wrinkling or curving. The paint must dry thoroughly before going to the next step. I usually use a hair dryer or go to a different painting while waiting for the paint to dry.
I didn't take a picture but I keep a fine mist sprayer handy to mist the paper or canvas. When the paint starts to first begin to drag, I mist. The goal is not to have brush marks showing in the sky, at least for this exercise.
One other thing, after painting in the sky with "X" strokes, blend very, very lightly, almost laying your hand on the side, with "X strokes. The goal is not to have streaks but a smooth blend. The brush is barely caressing the paper as it smooths out the paint.
03-14-2007, 11:08 AM
Oooo, this is going to be so helpful! Should I do a drawing then at all? It's looking like no, that we're just diving right into paint.
What size should I use? I usually practice small (yesterday was 5X7), but I'm guessing I should go bigger- I have canvas boards 7X9, I have stretched canvas 8X10, and I have watercolour paper (you dont care if it wrinkles? HOW can you not care! :lol: ), even a watercolour block (for wrinkle-o-phobes like me, but I'm daring, I'll try anything!). I also have canvas paper but yesterday I decided I didn't like it, but I'm open to being persuaded.
I'll await your direction! Today I have to head off to work but I'll be diving right in tomorrow. Thanks for the photos you're posting so far... this is SO helpful!
03-14-2007, 11:10 AM
Ex Fisherman, just saw your attachment, your clouds are great!
03-14-2007, 11:11 AM
I want to dive in here. When I get five free minutes I think I will. I could use some practice on clouds.
03-14-2007, 11:21 AM
Polygon, use the size you feel comfortable painting. These are exercises/studies so you can use panels, paper, stretched canvas or even unstretched canvas that has been gessoed. I often use the gessoed unstretched canvas because it makes for easier storage. Use the support you feel most comfortable using. I am using paper this time because I have lots of it with paintings that didn't work so can use it for practice pieces.
If you feel more comfortable sketching in the clouds then do that. I put a full covering of gesso on and while still wet paint in the sky color. Let that dry completely then sketch in your clouds if you wish.
Practice those "X" strokes. The goal is not to daub the brush on the paper but to glide it on even when doing the strokes. If you daub the brush you will get noticeable marks. :D I know from experience and I still get them and have to go back to blend them out lol.
For those of you that are bothered by wrinkles in watercolor paper, you can always stretch your paper first so it doesn't wrinkle or staple it down. Whatever you do to get a flat paper works. :D
Cool Debbie, that would be great to have you joining in. Remember though, I'm no expert and it is all trial and error, so we each can share what worked for us.
03-14-2007, 11:27 AM
Thanks Ruth and Polygon. Painting from the head.
Ann, I'm also a big fan of Jerry Yarnell. I got all his books. The foliage is done with a sponge. I mix hooker's green with a bit of purple, and a bit of burnt umber. I Dab the mixture with a sponge. Once the dark background is done, I added various layers of lighter shades of green. Again dab with a sponge. Add tiny branches last.
03-14-2007, 11:30 AM
I have a question already- the goal is to not have brushmarks showing, gotcha. The paint you're using is still quite thick though, right? It's the wet paper that's making it spread out?
I usually acheive the no-brushmarks by thinning the paint, is that OK? I'm using golden liquids (in case you're not familiar with that brand, they still have some texture to them if unthinnned)
Also, I don't have any large brushes (I'm new to acrylics and have been working small), my largest is 1 cm wide, so I guess I shoudn't work too large because of that? I could possibly get to the supply store tomorrow evening, but I'm keen to start painting before that if possible.
03-14-2007, 11:33 AM
Ah, we cross posted- OK, I'll stay fairly small for this one then.
My paper always wrinkles even with stretching! I use a lot of water I guess. It always flattens out again but in the meantime the moguls give trouble, esp. where the runoff forms lakes. I'll probably use a board for this one but I do want to master paper eventually.
03-14-2007, 12:38 PM
Hi Polygon, you only want enough water to keep the paint moist, not dripping or runny. The paint should be creamy but rather thick so the Golden fluids should be just great. It is the dry brushing that makes it work which doesn't use water. :D
I'm getting ready to attach some more photos that hopefully will show what I mean. :D
I really appreciate your interest as I'm learning too.
Remember, there is more than one way to paint skies and clouds, this is only one of those ways!
03-14-2007, 12:40 PM
More Photos attached!
03-14-2007, 12:41 PM
and more photos!
03-14-2007, 12:43 PM
And two more photos! This will show where I am right now. It isn't perfect and the clouds lack the highlights but the basis is there. some of the photos may be blurry. It is hard to paint at the same time a picture is being taken! :D
03-14-2007, 12:52 PM
Wow, you make it seem so easy and so fast! Can't wait to try it tomorrow. I think it'll take me multiple "drafts" but I'm keen to figure it out.
Are you waiting for it to completely dry in between layers? I guess it's probably drying pretty fast anyway, but is it OK to dive in with the next blob if the previous layer of cloud is still damp?
03-14-2007, 01:05 PM
Fisherman, I missed your post. Thanks so much for sharing how you did your trees. I see you use Jerry's mixture for trees too. :) If I could I would spend three days a week in his studio taking lessons but it is about five hours roundtrip for me. I bet you could give us some tips on painting the clouds/skies too.
Polygon, sure paint wet in wet. Each way gives us experience and teaches us what works best for us. :D It only appears fast because I have time to paint since I'm not working and can take lots of breaks. :lol:
If anyone, has information that would helps us all to learn, I hope you will share it with us here. We are like sponges, waiting to soak up your experience and knowedge! :D
03-14-2007, 01:47 PM
this is a totally awesome thread!!! thanks for starting it. i love jerry yarnell and have watched several of his shows but i like the way you're demonstrating his technique for the clouds. i can't wait to try it!!! :clap: :clap: :clap:
03-14-2007, 01:59 PM
Here's me trying clouds :P... it's a WIP, 'cause I haven't darkened, grayed, or blued the clouds yet, and need to lighten up the sky a bit, and I got ideas :wink2:
03-14-2007, 02:35 PM
Hi Screechin and Dueck, glad you are enjoying this and nice to see your WIP Dueck. Great color base.
Screechin, I am one of those that like each little bitty step shown lol. I appreciate the WIP's everyone does but sometimes would like to see the little steps inbetween.
03-14-2007, 02:49 PM
Screechin, I am one of those that like each little bitty step shown lol. I appreciate the WIP's everyone does but sometimes would like to see the little steps inbetween. Amen sister!! me too!!! that's why i'm loving this one so much! great job!!! i'm planning on giving it a shot tonight. i've played around with jerry's technique a little (from the "Grandpa's Truck" PBS series) and it for sure takes practice to get the blending down!!
03-14-2007, 03:47 PM
Ann Thanks: I found a few pictures of trees, rocks, and water. So I did some practice. The water just wouldn't work, the more I tried the worse it got. C&C please. Janhttp://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/14-Mar-2007/63545-practice,rocks,_trees,_and_very_bad_water.jpg
03-14-2007, 05:03 PM
[I bet you could give us some tips on painting the clouds/skies too.
We'll, you pretty much cover the clouds. How about I do some trees, step by step.
03-14-2007, 05:04 PM
Looking forward to seeing what you paint, Screechin! :D
Jan, I will try to help but take everything I say with a grain of salt. The first thing I would do is paint the rocks in the water, then paint the water over the rocks. That way it gives the water shape and form. Where the water meets the bank/rocks near the dead tree there would be some splash or rivulets over the lower part of the rock, I think. If you could post a photo that you used, that would help clarify what is happening. The water at the top would be lighter than where it rolls over and down it would be darker as it is receiving less light. Always look where the light would be hitting the water or the rocks. Those areas would be lighter or brighter and the other areas would be a bit darker or shadowed. Hope this helps! :)
Fisherman, that would be cool as I would like to see how you and other members paint the trees and other landscape symbols.
03-14-2007, 05:21 PM
thank you Ann: my scanner is on the blink, but will post the picture when I can. I know what you mean about the water. I think I just quit on it. I start to do the splash on the rocks but quit. I will work more on water and clouds and post them. I have been working on the challene for March right now. Have worked on it all day. The water is working better in it. I want to work on clouds next. I want to thank you for all your help. Jan
03-14-2007, 06:19 PM
Very lovely Ann! I am looking forward to seeing more of your work! I will also be following your class with great enthusiasm! Molly
03-14-2007, 07:56 PM
Ann, what brand of gesso do you use?
03-14-2007, 09:13 PM
Good luck with the March Challenge Jan. Hope it all comes together for you. I haven't started it yet! :(
Hi Molly, good of you to stop in. Looking forward to hearing from you.
Screechin, I bought Grumbacher brand which has a nice creamy consistency almost like paint.
Have fun you all. I went back into the clouds and made the darks a bit darker to give it more of an evening look.
03-14-2007, 10:20 PM
Speaking of techniques for painting clouds, I remember a thread in which Mark Newton talked about how to paint cirrus clouds... here it is:
03-15-2007, 02:48 AM
OK, here's a quick demo of how I do my trees. It's a little sloppy, but you get the idea.
1. Basic sketch
2. Under painting
3. First highlight
Loading sponge with dark green then light green on the tip of the sponge
4. 2nd highlight
5. Final highlight
6. Add branches
7. Highlight trunk and branches
(No time to do all the details)
03-15-2007, 04:50 AM
Great thread Ann!
For some reason landscapes just don't 'do it' for me. I love viewing them, standing in them, soaking them up but when it comes to painting them I just see a mass of brown, blue and green...and absolutely no inspiration. :rolleyes:
I'm hoping that my sketchbook travels this year along with my love of architechture will help break the barriers and some kind of electric bolt will snap me out of this, as I am surrounded by beautiful landscape here in the fens and it's such a shame I feel no urge to paint it!
Well deserved rating on this thread...Bravo! :clap:
03-15-2007, 07:28 AM
That is a good link Metalhead, thanks for posting it. I like Mark Newton's work very much as it is fresh and expressive.
Thanks for the demo photos of the trees, Ex-Fisherman. I like the way you laid them out for us so we can see each step. They will prove very helpful to us as we practice trees. :)
Hi Anita, no doubt in my mind you would do as well painting landscapes as you do with each subject you now paint. You have a gift, for sure!
As I mentioned in a previous post, I darkened some of the clouds. Then painted the light in the clouds with gesso mixed with a touch of cadmium red light or with cadmium yellow medium.
03-15-2007, 09:19 AM
yes, thanks for that link metalhead. i added it to my favorites (as i did with this thread!) so i can go back to it again later.
also thanks ex-fisherman for your step-by-step on trees. i love seeing other folks techniques!!
ann, i bought daler-rowney gesso last time and it seems a bit thick. i thinned it down a little and put 2 coats on a canvas and let them dry. then i put on another coat of gesso and blended in a sky. dipping one corner of the hake brush in water sure seemed to help a lot!! in all of my other attempts, i ended up with lots of brush strokes showing but not this time. i didn't get around to adding any clouds tho. i had a migraine come on. it happens a lot when we have stormy weather headed our way (your clouds in your lastest photo look like some that are rolling into my neck of the woods right now!). it's kind of hard to focus on things with a migraine. hopefully i'll be able to give the clouds a shot tonight.
03-15-2007, 09:19 AM
Ann, you may have explained this before, and I apologize if you did, but why would someone decide to mix with gesso vs. white? (I've always thought of gesso as just a primer.)
03-15-2007, 10:31 AM
Hi Linda: I am not Ann, but I too use gesso. The reason is it is much more opaque then white, and it mixes very well with paint, I use the thick and can thin it down with a little water. Very little water. I mix it with a color i want to use as an under coat and to blend in skies and etc. It may not be for everyone, but I like it. Jan
03-15-2007, 10:57 AM
Screechin, hope the migraine is past and your stormy weather. I was pleased to hear that the bit of water on the brush helped with the blending and less brush strokes.
Jan, it is just my personal preference to use gesso rather than white paint. I found gesso to be easier to get a creamy mixture for blending plus, as Jan said, it is opaque. Also the gesso is more absorbent than white paint. I had a used canvas and painted over it with Titanium white. It felt stiff whereas, a used canvas covered with gesso still feels very pliant or workable. Besides I love how the gesso works when painting clouds. :)
Hi Jan, thanks for giving Linda an answer. I'm a bit under the weather this morning with a rather stiff neck and leg. Aging has it perks but it also has its pains ha ha.
03-15-2007, 12:33 PM
I'm going to throw these clouds in, as this is what I've been working on. Please feel free to use this as a reference for your cloud practices as well.
I'll have to post the work photo later, but I can describe it right now - mud on blue. Sigh. I'll have to re-gesso it, and try again.
03-15-2007, 12:42 PM
Thanks for the photo, Laurie. Beautiful color in those clouds.
Why not let it dry thoroughly and then just gesso where you want the cloud formations? I understand quite well about mud lol. I think we have all been there several times.
I am gessoing a used canvas so it will take a couple of coats of thick gesso to get it primed somewhat smoothly. Then I am going to divide it into four sections like Jerry Y. did in his class. Painting a sky in each section, then painting a mountain in one, a tree in one, grass in one and the last one, rocks. Hope it goes as planned! The purpose of this is to get us to look at forms, shapes, and values.
I also meant to say thank you everyone for rating this thread. I hope it is useful for us all. So to that end, if you know of anything that would add to our knowledge base and skills, please feel free to post! Thanks!
03-15-2007, 01:01 PM
Here is a practice I did this morning of trees(some clouds). I will explain.
1. This is the undercoat; Burnt sienna, ultramarine blue, and purple.
2. this is the first highlights. With the undercoat I have added gesso. If the color is too blue or purple, add some burnt sienna. Then dry brush the highlights in.
3. I have added more highlights with gesso and a touch of orange. (sunshine).
4. The last step is the mixture of blue, purple, and gesso to make a reflected highlight.
The evergreen trees.
5. I mix hookers green and purple and with the brush paint in the trunk. I then start in the middle of the tree I work up then down until I have the tree full- 6.
7. I have added the beginning highlights with mixture of hookers green and purple and gesso. Again you may have to add some green if it is too purple.
8. The final highlights are thalo yellow green and a small amount of hookers green and gesso. I hope you enjoy and C&C welcome. Jan The picturer is a little dark.http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/15-Mar-2007/63545-practice_trees.jpg
03-15-2007, 01:31 PM
Success! Ann, it worked! More or less, but yes, it worked! Here are my photos...
I used my wet-on-dry technique to lay a graded sky (two of them actually, I figured I'd need a spare panel for practice but in the end it just... worked!).
I then blobbed white on (direct from the bottle) and pushed it around with the brush for the white part, then layered in grey. I'd also go at it with a wet brush here and there which also helped with the blending. Layered in some more white where needed (and to add that cloud that sticks out in front of the main cloud). I then added that treeline for the heck of it but I'm glad I did, it really pulls it together as a sky.
Not perfect, still some things I'd change, but wow! What a switch from my muddlings 2 days ago!
You're a great instructor :clap: ! Ann, can you show us some water techniques too when you get the chance? BTW, I LOVE your total step-by-stepness with the photos, it makes a huge difference.
03-15-2007, 01:36 PM
Question: I took the book "brushwork essentials" out of the library yesterday and haven't gotten far in it yet, but it does say to never push the brush as it's too hard on the brush, but I confess, I pushed it a bit, it really helps with the cloud wisps. Any tips on push-less wisp-ing?
03-15-2007, 03:03 PM
Jan, good tree exercises. Thanks for sharing the colors and how you did them. That is useful information for us all. I also meant to mention how much I like your wispy clouds! :)
Polygon, hooray that was really good news to hear, that it worked for you. I really like the nicely blended sky you started with too. Oh yes, they look like clouds! :D One thing I was taught was not to use straight white but to add just a touch of another color to very lightly tint it. White is rather stark and is usually saved for the very brightest of highlights. Even then it usually will have another color mixed into it in the palest of color.
Sure, I will try to do water for you as well. This is all about things we see in the landscape. I will show you what little I know, then you all can practice to your heart's content to get better and better, and can teach me. :D Sounds like a deal to me!
03-16-2007, 01:19 AM
Done my cloud study :) I like it, personally. I love doing these things on paper.
03-16-2007, 09:06 AM
Very colorful clouds, I like them. Jan
03-16-2007, 09:12 AM
Hi Ann...This is all just marvelous..I am learning a great deal here! I am anxiously waiting for you to demonstrate painting ROCKS...I need to master them. They are a magic touch if done properly to add to a painting that you have stared at with new eyes each day, knowing there is something missing..sometimes a rock or two placed strategically will do the trick!
03-16-2007, 10:22 AM
I think it would be a good idea to demonstrate rocks. They can be a curse to me. I have practiced, and could use some tips on them. Jan
03-16-2007, 12:26 PM
Polygon, I missed your question on pushing the brush. I am guilty of doing that too. :( I think with drybrushing or scumbling one will tend to push a little . As I understand it, I start at or near the edge where the thicker paint cloud edge is at the top of the cloud. I then lay my brush on its side and scumble back and forth from side to side or in different directions. Whatever it takes to get a smooth transition. The tips of the brushes I use for drybrushing are quite worn now except for the newest brush I am currently using. Drybrushing wears a brush down pretty fast.
Dueck, you are getting some really good dimensions on your clouds, lights/darks. The one suggestion i have is to make the transitions smoother from one value to the next. By doing this you will get more than one value in the transition and the clouds will look more seamless, as one cloud going from light to dark. Clouds have a few hard edges but still manage to look soft on those edges. Love the colors you are using too. That must be a beautiful sunrise or sunset.
Hi Jan, the other people looking in may not realize that you have had several classes/workshops with Jerry Yarnell while I have only had one lol.
Molly and Jan, I have been painting this morning trying to incorporate the sky, trees, water and rocks. I have about 50 photos to resize and color correct, so will post them in groups. The stage of the painting is where the landscape has been laid in with blocks of color or shapes, so hope you all will bear with me while I try to explain what is going on in the photos.
Be back in a bit with photos. I am also planning to make this into a .pdf and will place it with the other Wet Canvas drawing .pdf's stored on my website. So feel free to download them. The .pdf will come later though and I will let you know when it is posted.
03-16-2007, 01:47 PM
Attached are a few photos of the basic lay-in of the painting. Note the brushes and the angle the liner brush is held when laying in tree trunks. The reason for the angle is that the paint will then flow to the tip and you don't have to go back to the palette as frequently for more paint.
03-16-2007, 01:49 PM
More photos attached:
03-16-2007, 01:52 PM
and the last bunch for now. The next group of photos will focus on individual subjects such as the water and rocks. :D
03-16-2007, 02:50 PM
Ann it looks great. I am working on a rock practice. I am letting it dry before highlights. I am not really making a picture with any compositition. Just putting rocks, grass and I don't know what else. will post when I am done. Jan
03-16-2007, 03:45 PM
This is a quick rock study. I just made up the trees. But the rocks were out of a picture I took in Texas Canyon in Arizona. I just picked out a few rocks and used them as a reference. c&c Janhttp://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/16-Mar-2007/63545-rocks.jpg
03-16-2007, 04:01 PM
Great looking Rocks Jan! They have good variation of color and values. Thanks so much for posting this. Good work on those trees too. :)
03-16-2007, 04:04 PM
Hope this is okay with everyone and not too many photos for you.
03-16-2007, 04:05 PM
03-16-2007, 04:12 PM
03-16-2007, 04:13 PM
Last batch! Is this enough of an idea as to how to do rocks? The very last step is to put the highlights on the rocks.
03-16-2007, 04:16 PM
Ann - What a fantastic thread! Thanks for taking so much time to provide so many wonderful practical lessons w/pictures for all of us. I can't wait to have time to read everything.
03-16-2007, 04:25 PM
Great rock tutorial! I'll probably try some rocks tomorrow.
I bought some cheap brushes today to try for drybrushing, it seemed to me when I was doing my clouds that brush quality is not so essential for drybrush, in fact, having the bristles tending to go every which way should be a good thing for some manoeuvers!
03-16-2007, 05:56 PM
Ann: your work looks very interesting. I am waiting to see the finished product. I really like the look. It is coming to life. As Jerry says "it is coming together". Jan
03-16-2007, 07:52 PM
Here is where the painting is right now. Someone else could have whipped this out in no time probably lol. Worked on the water a bit to vary the values, added a few rocks and put in some grassy areas. The water is actually a love greyed shade of blue-green-purple but just can't get it photographed right. More tomorrow!
Hope you all aren't getting bored. I'll try to speed it up a bit. :D
03-17-2007, 07:03 AM
Ann: It's lovely, looks like a place I would like to visit. I almost can hear the water running. I enjoyed watching the progress. Jan
03-17-2007, 11:33 AM
Thanks Jan. The photo was by Stoney from the RIL. I looked but it wasn't listed under his name anymore.
Here are some rock photos painted this morning. These are rough rocks. River rocks will be smoother as they are worn by the water.
Next, I will up load bare trees that are often painted in a background and some fir trees.
I've been working on water too but want a good photo to use as reference for it.
Trees - As with all things look at the outside edges and try to make the negative spaces interesting. Try keeping those negative spaces different sizes, different shapes. These were all painted with a #4 flat bristle brush except for the bare tree. Hookers green, dioxazine purple was the main mixture then added at times burnt sienna or ultramarine blue with a pthalo yellow green added in for a light. Sometimes I would almost mix a bit of gesso in for lighter midtones.
03-17-2007, 01:05 PM
And a bit of water. I layed in the darker blue, then painted in the reflections. You can try very lightly brush sideway across the reflections to soften the edges. Let dry. I painted a light grey glaze using just water and paint over this. Using a rigger brush I then painted in the squiggles in the water and along the banks.
If you have any questions just let me know. I hope this has been somewhat helpful. :)
03-17-2007, 02:20 PM
I'm still on clouds :rolleyes: but thought I would share. I was trying for an impressionistic approach.
Stand by while I attempt to upload images
03-17-2007, 03:35 PM
I like the impressionist look. Those are great colors you chose and I like that the clouds are not a stark white but have different colors in them. Always look to see the direction the light is coming from, whether the side, above or even below and then highlight the cloud on that side. I am going to have to try this too as I do like to see brush strokes in work.
03-17-2007, 03:48 PM
Thanks idcrisis, I think in this painting the light would be coming from the right side so I'll go back and put some highlights in the clouds. Do you think I should darken them any further or just add the light/sparkle?
Think I MAY have figured out this uploading image thing, thanks to my book: Windows xp for Dummies.
Here is the painting thus far, ignore the bottom, I'm still not good at monochrome values as the underpainting, I just go for it. :D
Now that I look at it I don't know where the light would be coming from.
03-17-2007, 08:16 PM
Okay, here's my reference photo:
This is my first attempt which ended in muddy clouds:
Following idcrisis's gesso sky tips, this is what my canvas looks like now:
It's not as deep blue as I'd like, but this is only practice after all. Next time I'd add more cerulean blue and some more ultramarine blue. to acheive the differences in tonal range, I used arylide yellow and gesso to get that golden tint at the bottom right of the canvas, and then used cerulean for the rest of the canvas, increasing the ultramarine, and dabbing a little bit of napthol red medium as I move up to the top and to the right. I really like this blending method. In fact, I just applied a glaze of cerulean using a glazing medium, so I'm now happy with the blue.
Now with the clouds, since they're not exactly white in my ref photos - I'm trying to figure out what colours should I work with to make that fiery clouds. Ideas?
03-17-2007, 08:45 PM
Clouds are alot harder than they look huh?
Here is my re-do.
03-18-2007, 08:47 AM
Lawton, I chuckled at your comment that clouds are a lot harder to do than one thinks because you are so right. The last photo you posted is very nice and I think you are getting the hang of it. The paint looks like it is rather thickly applied so you have a challenge learning to get the values using this method. I am going to have to try it too :D. My goal is lay down a stroke and let it lay when learning that. One suggestion would be to go from the heavy impasto to soft wisps of clouds.
Clouds are like anything that has form, they have a dark, light and mid-value. They may be close in range but they are there. The very first question I ask myself before I lay in paint is where is the light direction. That question then guides everything I do and am always conscious of that.
Laurie, I love the beauty of the clouds in the reference photo. I can see why you would like to paint them. Great job on applying the gesso/paint and blending it smooth. Did you notice the grey in the reference photo's clouds. My suggestion would be to use the same colors you used in the background. Mix up the grey paint, take a section of it and add just a touch of the red to see if you like it. Then you can add either yellow to the grey/red mixture to make it more orange or a blue to make it more purple. The grey can go to almost white or dark and it is the base color for your cloud mixtures.
Remember, plop a glob of paint on the canvas, wipe the brush off, turn the brush on the side, brush from side to side or in a circular motion changing directions until most of the glob of paint has been smoothed out, blended into the background. Next, plop another glob into a section of the blended out area where you want the light edge of the next cloud to be. Then wipe the brush and begin the blending process again. You can change values, colors, etc. It is fun, watching the clouds become billowing or wispy.
I will keep checking back to see if you have more questions or if there is something you would like me to show the steps to again.
03-18-2007, 11:52 AM
I have a struggle with lanes, paths, or roads. I have worked with Jerry Yarnell on them, and he has helped me a lot. I am posting a quick study I did this morning of a path. Any c&c is welcome. Janhttp://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Mar-2007/63545-road_or_path_study.jpg
03-18-2007, 12:39 PM
Jan, nice value gradation in those mountains. It really gives one a sense of distance. You also have good gradation in the path. The one thing I would suggest is instead of having the dark line where the path begins it slight turn, leave off the dark outline(viewer's right side of the path). Instead bring the grasses up just a bit or bring the horizontal light of the path over more.
03-18-2007, 12:54 PM
Thanks everyone for posting your work and your steps, I'm learning a lot from everyone's approaches. This is such a helpful thread!
I have some rocks picked out and I've been trying to do them for 2 days but I'm scared! :eek: :lol: But I am going to tackle them this afternoon, really. Isn't inertia a funny thing? When I first did those hideous clouds I had to keep going until I conquered them, but now I don't want to start the rocks because I know draft 1 is probably going to be just as bad... :rolleyes: Oh well, once I screw it up I'll be hooked until I fix it!
03-18-2007, 01:06 PM
Good Idea Ann. Thank you. Jan
03-18-2007, 01:21 PM
Polygon, think of the rock as a rectangle with a dark, medium and light value. then put in the craggy rough parts by drybrushing or use a stiff card and rake through the paint. Just have fun and see what happens when it is play. :D
Anytime Jan. Wish I could offer more concrete help but you are doing great.
03-18-2007, 01:24 PM
Just a short note to thank everyone especially Ann. I have learned so much in this thread.
I have had all kinds of visitors lately and could not practice but would regularly escape to go to the computer to check out the thread.
I paint in oil and starting a 6-week program for Acrylics on Wednesday. I have attempted to experiment with the acrylics and found it quite challenging. You just turn around for a moment and the paint is dry:( Quite different than oil.
Thank you so very much Ann and I will definitely try the clouds, rocks, trees and the gesso things:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :thumbsup:
03-18-2007, 04:57 PM
OK, this didn't go as badly as I thought (well, it sort of did, this is # 2 :D), although I'm not sure what to do to do them better. I kind of feel I'm on the right track, do I just need finesse? Or maybe there's a totally better way? Open to any and all suggestions and direction!
I chose some cliff-like rocks to use as my reference, here's the photo. Wasn't trying to replicate it precisely, just using it as a guide for how the rock spits and shadows fall, basic colours etc. I used drybrushing a lot, with so-so results, but better than not doing drybrushing (that's how #1 bit the dust).
03-18-2007, 05:17 PM
Polygon, I hope you don't mind that I cropped your reference photo and converted it to grayscale. I also converted your painting to grayscale to give a better idea of values for comparison with the reference photo. I have attached them so you can open them side by side. :)
You are doing marvelous! Truly you are. The main thing I see is there need to be a bit more variation in colors, a few more darker values and, bands of dark to light rocks as shown in the reference photo.
Another thing to consider is to vary the shades of red. See how they go from a rust (burnt sienna color) to a more orangy red, sometimes medium value, sometimes much lighter in value and sometimes quite dark. That will create more interest, but more than that it will create scale, giving the feeling of protrusions, crevasses, ridges, etc. Instead of a horizontal stroke, use at times a vertical stroke or a diagonal stroke. No doubt you are already aware of all of this. :)
Budding Artist, thank you! I am so pleased that you got something out of this. :) When you get a chance to practice I hope you will share with us too.
03-18-2007, 05:25 PM
Thanks, Ann! For the additional shades of red, how do you suggest I do that, should it be in blocks in the underpainting (is that the correct word in this instance?), or should it be additional drybrushing on top? I had considered doing some of the white rock bands as a flatter block under the drybrushing but in the end tried this.
Seems to me that if I did some more varied blocks instead of the flat monotone cliff, maybe that would help? I was trying to simplify things but might have taken it too far.
Let me know what you think and I might give it another try. I did sketches too and it was just so frustrating to try and deal with the sections of rocks, the horizontal shattering makes it so complex, and difficult to pick out the main forms. Maybe blocks of different tones would help with that.
03-18-2007, 05:41 PM
I agree with you Polygon, try the variation in tones in a block. You can use burnt sienna as a base, mix it to a mid-tone value then take a portion, mix in some yellow, that will give you more orangy-red. To that you can lighten or dark as need be. Then from the original base portion, add a purple to the burnt sienna, that will give you some darks or you can add a permanent alizarin crimson to go even redder. Just play with the color mixtures and see which ones work well together. Lighten and darken each mixture to see how they look. I know it sounds like a lot of paint but if you do small dabs from your base mixture, it really won't be that much. :)
You could also look at the mountain, pick one area, mix the mid-value color you see in that area. From that pile then you can take a portion to mix a dark, take another portion to mix a light - three values. Or change colors within that area.
As I said you really are doing marvelous. I like the structure of the mountains and you have the darks in there. Just widen some of the dark areas, and play with the value changes. When I play like this I take lots of photos so I can see them on the computer monitor. Then I can see if I'm on the right track.
03-18-2007, 09:33 PM
Aaaargh, but these cliffs are hard. Ann, I tried it, and while I got cliffs that are much more visually interesting, I don't know that they're any more rocky or cliffy.
Couldn't take progress pics, they come out blurry once the sun is down, even with the flash. This one's from the scanner. I did a flat colour (mostly burnt sienna, with some a. crimson and beige added), then laid paler and bluer patches into it, and then the dark cracks. Then dark and light drybrushing, and then working on the cracks to make the edges rough.
Any further tips? I'm guessing I need a little more attention to where the cracks fall so that they push the light areas forward, although I tried to do this- maybe be more attentive to where the lighter portions go too.
03-18-2007, 09:53 PM
Polygon, you are getting five stars for perseverance and the way you use color. I think you are almost there. I love the colors you achieved and the interest. My question to you is do you feel it is too busy because of all the color or because all areas have the same intensity of color and the same contrasts/sharp edges?
What do you think of picking an area where you want the most contrasts (lights/darks), most intense color and most sharpness, your focal area. Then doing a glaze of some of the other areas to mute them just a bit. The goal is to pick and choose the path you want the viewer's eye to travel.
Here is a link to Arts For The Parks (http://www.artsfortheparks.com/index.html) website. You may be familiar with it. They have some beautiful paintings of canyons, etc. Look at them and see how they create the focus. They do this by softening some edges, muting some colors.
I think you can do rocks and I have to say you chose a very challenging reference photo to learn from. For sure, I don't think I could do as well as you have. If you need more help just yell! :D
03-18-2007, 10:39 PM
Here is a link to Arts For The Parks (http://www.artsfortheparks.com/index.html) website.
Wow, intimidating site! :lol:
I read your last post just before I was about to clean out my palette, so I muted some of the cliffs just a tad. I think it helps; the scan is just not as bright as the other one so it's difficult to see the difference but I think there is one. I think it's a bit better, what do you think? At this late stage in the game I was limited for what I could tone down and still keep the form and depth that did work.
Thanks for all your help, Ann!
03-19-2007, 07:54 AM
I like it much better, do you? The way you muted the outside edge (our left) works.
03-19-2007, 11:36 AM
Hi idcrisis55 - So far so good...
My question re brushes - is the flat brush size dependent on the size of the canvas? For example, if I've got a large canvas, say 18" by 24" or something like that, would it be better to go with bigger flat brush? I was working with a size 4, and the clouds are almost getting there - except that it's small...
03-19-2007, 12:15 PM
Laurie, my humble opinion is the bigger the canvas the bigger the brush. I like to use the largest brush I can to accomplish the job. It might take some practice using a larger brush in a smaller area but you might try that too.
03-19-2007, 03:15 PM
Today was the first chance I had to practice those famous clouds. You guys are way ahead of me as I have yet to practice rocks, water etc.
Most of all, this is my first attempt in acrylic (usually do oil). and man, does it dry fast.
Gessoes canvass sheet, while wet, painted the blue background, then using gesso and white, put the blob on and dry brushed (had the wrong brush but gave it my best shot). That little spray bottle of water also came in handy
Then, continuing to play, I added a bit of greenery and painted a tree in, again, trying to take in all the advice
And finally, another pic of the clouds
Any comments, suggestions, critiques to further improve will be appreciated.
Now if I could only do a "bright sunny day sky":lol:
Thank you Ann and the gang
03-19-2007, 04:18 PM
The clouds are really nice, soft and a nice glow. If you want a highlight on some of them, take a very soft brush such as a sable, mix a bit of gesso or white with just a very, very small touch of yellow or orange or red and add it to the edges. The paint will appear almost white but it isn't. :D
For the tree, you did great with the trunk and some of the thicker limbs. One thing that can be done is as you go up the tree or limb decrease the pressure of the brush on the canvas. Always paint the limbs and small branches from the trunk out that way there won't be thick nodules on the tiny branches. Do not paint the tiny branches from the outside going in toward the trunk. Notice how the tiny branches look thicker on the outer edges?
You are doing great though as is everyone. It just takes lots of patience and practice.
One more thing on blending a smooth sky. Wet the canvas, apply the gesso, smooth out and while it is still wet (you may have to mist the canvas lightly now and then) paint at the top an ultramarine blue, painting with X's then very lightly smooth. The bottom of the canvas pick another color or even use ultramarine blue again and do the same as above. Then starting in the middle take a very soft brush such as a hake and very, very lightly blend going up and then down the canvas. See if that works for you. :)
03-19-2007, 09:43 PM
well, i gave the clouds a try tonight. i'm still very tired from having a house full of company over the weekend and headaches too but i gave it a shot. keep in mind that this is my very first attemp at clouds too. i think they look more like a lumpy mountain range myself. :eek: but i guess that's the purpose of a study, right? practice, practice, practice.:D
03-20-2007, 12:11 AM
03-20-2007, 10:06 AM
Screechin, nicely done with the clouds. The sky has a smooth transition so that the clouds stand out from it. Your clouds have a dimensional look with good values that tell me where the light is hitting. The big thing is they look like clouds. The one thing I would like for you to notice is the even spacing in the dips between the clouds.
I hope you don't mind but I saved your photo and drew some lines on it to show some of the even spacing I see. Then drew circles where, using Photoshop, those spaces were filled in or the cloud rounded a bit. I also added text and the photo is attached.
If anyone doesn't want me to do this with Photoshop on your images just let me know, okay? :)
One of the things I noticed among some of the paintings that was fairly consistent was that members painted fairly thick. The thickest part of the first cloud will be the initial glob plopped on the canvas which is then thoroughly and smoothly blended out in the background of the sky. Next, decide where the 2nd cloud will overlap the first cloud then plop anothe glob of paint, through blend and shape the 2nd cloud. Clouds, using this method are built in layers. One can have three clouds on one side of the paint and one cloud on the othe side with wisps coming off the one cloud. You are the artists and you can change anything, do anything to get the look you want.
Remember this is only one method of painting clouds, once you learn the cloud shapes, how they lay and are formed with values, then experiment a lot. To me this is the most fun part. :D
03-20-2007, 10:06 AM
Thank you so much Ann. I will keep practising and keep your comments in mind for the highlights and the trees.
Amazing how much I have learned from your thread. I could never do a nice sky (even in oil) before.
Would anybody else be interested in exploring other "skies" such as a sunny day sky?
By the way Polygon, your "rocks" really rock:lol:
03-20-2007, 10:11 AM
Budding Artist, thank you and everyone else that has visited the thread and commented.
For sunny skies, do exactly the same thing but leave out the clouds. Experiment with different colors, adding gesso and blending with a pale color for a lighter area, or blending a color over the gesso. Skies do not have to be blue. :D
03-20-2007, 10:39 AM
thanks silent jaguar!!
I hope you don't mind but I saved your photo and drew some lines on it to show some of the even spacing I see. Then drew circles where, using Photoshop, those spaces were filled in or the cloud rounded a bit. I also added text and the photo is attached.
If anyone doesn't want me to do this with Photoshop on your images just let me know, okay? :)
thanks Ann!!! and no, I don't mind at all. i'm glad you did because i didn't notice the even spacing before. that's why i'm here, to learn!! thanks again!!
i do have another question. on your photoshopped photos, to get that fluffiness in the clouds, how is that done with a real paint brush? did i possibly have the paint too thick to begin with? or was it too thin? when i "plopped a glob" (i just love your terminology!!:D ) of the paint on the canvas it wasn't as thick as yours appeared in your demo photos. so i'm assuming i had it thinned out with water too much.
03-20-2007, 11:24 AM
The glob of paint isn't thinned. The background sky has dried, mix the cloud color, scoop up paint on the end of the brush and plop. :D I usually have a paper towel close by and wipe the brush on it. I just took some photos and will be back in a bit with them. :)
03-20-2007, 11:54 AM
On the spur of the moment, I took three 10 second videos using my digital camera, painting clouds, which can be found on my site. Just click the video buttons and be aware, it takes awhile for them to load. I hope this helps. If it does then I will do them for rocks, trees and water. If you have a problem opening them, I hope you will let me know that too. Feel free to download them to your own computer too. :)
Here is the link: Clouds (http://www.atreesse.com/videos.html)
03-20-2007, 12:59 PM
cool idea with the video Ann. but i was unable to see them. windows media player doesn't recognize that file extension and i can't load new programs on my computer at work (rules and regulations ya know). maybe i can see them on my computer at home. i'll try again tonight.
03-20-2007, 01:57 PM
So sorry Screechin, I should have mentioned they open with Quick Time Player. I need to figure out a way to convert them to play with different media types such as Windows Media player.
03-20-2007, 08:24 PM
Here's what I've been working on in the past two days (and lurking here to watch what the rest of you are up to- learning from it!).
Having done sharp rocks, I wanted to try smooth stones before moving forwards. Here's my reference pic (a crop of a beautiful image from the RIL):
I didn't take too many progress pics, but here are a couple and a final. I think I did OK, what can I do to make the rocks look more "wet" and not "blended"? :lol: I used mostly Zinc white, a bit of titanium, and blending medium. In a few places I had to do two coats of "wetness" as it wasn't enough, and may have overdone it a bit (this ref image shows the wetness a bit differently on the monitor I view it on when I paint).
So anyway, would love some feedback, tips... esp. the submerged area in the upper L hand corner, I didn't do that well at all.
03-20-2007, 08:52 PM
What a challenge and I think it met it beautifully. You have a good sheen on the polished rocks and almost all of them have good variations of shapes, colors, form. The area that I noticed were the small rocks near the yellow rock in the upper left hand corner. Perhaps separating the little rocks with some deeper darks. Then just below that, the orange rock on the left, perhaps deepening the shadow side of the orange rock nearest the red rock. Then if you go to the bottom and the two rocks on the bottom right. The larger rock looks great but think a bit darker cast shadow would separate the two rocks more. Those are just small nits and my personal opinion only so please take them with a grain of salt. This painting is definitely one to be proud of.
03-20-2007, 09:32 PM
Thanks, Ann! The feedback definitely helps! Not sure what I'll try next- I want to do water but after the different strokes challenge I'm a little intimidated by it, so maybe I'll try a tree... we'll see! :rolleyes:
03-21-2007, 12:18 AM
Okay.. here it is again. The bottom half no so good, but the upper half is a bigger inprovement. I think I get the idea now, and it only takes more practice. I also need to be more generous with paint, not to skimp on it.
03-21-2007, 08:01 AM
The clouds are very good. I love the colors you have used. Jan
03-21-2007, 08:01 AM
Bravo, Laurie! Your upper clouds do look good and the lower clouds just need more form. Each cloud will have at least three values and by drybrushing or blending the paint as you go from dark to light you will often get more than the three values. Just think of clouds being full of air and light so even if one is using an impasto method putting in daubs of color, one can oh so lightly smooth to get a bit of blend that will give a feeling of air. You are so right, it just takes practice to get the techniques to the place you would like them to be. Have fun!
Polygon, if you paint one tree, flip the canvas and paint its duplicate. If you paint a light tree such as a birch, the opposite tree would be a bit darker. If you paint a fir tree the opposite tree would be a bit lighter. It is my understanding that if the object is light then the reflection in water would be darker and vice versa. Another thing you can do is turn your reference upside down and paint just the shapes and values. If you do that, not thinking of what the subject is but seeing just the shapes, form and value, you will be able to paint calm water with reflections or anything.
The trick is to paint blurry objects. You can paint the tree then quickly and very, very lightly swish the brush from one direction then from the opposite direction, keeping the touch very delicate and horizontal. After each delicate blending stroke, quickly wipe the brush on a dry towel. Oh, and use a dry soft brush. See if this helps any.
03-26-2007, 10:59 PM
Hey! Where's everybody go? :lol:
I finally got around to starting water practice today. I chose ocean waves as my first victim. I need some help, especially with the foam in the foreground. The rest isn't too bad (need to work on some of the light shining through the upper waves though), this is my second attempt. Here's the reference photo followed by my waves:
Any tips? I plan on doing this one again to try to improve it.
03-26-2007, 11:21 PM
awesome work, Polygon! I haven't started on my tree yet!
03-26-2007, 11:38 PM
I think your waves look great! I have a suggestion and that is to post this in the Marine Forum. I would love to hear what they have to say too as they are so much more experienced with water. What do you think?
03-27-2007, 09:48 AM
Sounds good, I forgot there was a marine forum! I was thinking of landscapes but that's even better, I'll give it a try.
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