View Full Version : Flower Girl WIP

04-12-2008, 10:12 AM
:wave:Good Morning All!

Spring Break has been pretty productive for me. I started this last night and have about 3 hours in so far. Decided to add a figure in this one though she's still quite sketchy. She will either be holding flowers or a basket. Not sure yet. Decisions, decisions. I'm open for suggestions.

Still debating what to do with the area toward the upper left and most of the flowery areas are just suggested at this point. I'll probably add a lot more detail and color.

Right now, when it's still very raw, I wouldn't mind suggestions on composition or anything else you might see. Thanks in advance! :D



20" x 16" wrapped canvas

04-12-2008, 10:35 AM
This is turning out to be beautiful...it is already. I wouldn't mind seeing some brighter foliage, especially toward the front. The dark mass of trees in the background is a bit distracting. Since they are quite a distance away, I'm wondering if the value should be lighter, rather than darker. I don't know...I'm still learning. ;) Keep up the good work. Looking forward to your next update.

04-12-2008, 10:42 AM
Elizabeth, you have been busy and productive...this is beautiful!! I love it just as it is. Can't wait to see the end!

04-12-2008, 12:28 PM
:wave: Hi Elizabeth - please tell me you didn't do this without any ref pic either? This is gonna be a fabulous one. How about a basket full of flowers :D
I could see a little pond there to the upper left...but on the other hand I see a lot of things when I have to much time on my hands :lol: Will be curiously awaiting an update

04-12-2008, 12:48 PM
I am going to offer no suggestions here.
Because I know that your works always turn out spectacularly.
(Who will just sit and watch)

04-12-2008, 01:36 PM
Elizabeth, this is going to be lovely! The light on the little girl is so nice and I love the splashes of purple flowers.

04-12-2008, 01:44 PM
How about a garden trug with flowers? That would cover all bases.

04-12-2008, 02:00 PM
:wave: Thanks for your early input Linda. I went to work right away lightening the back trees. I wish I would have done that first, but I don't think it was too late. Good eye and I really appreciate your help and positive thoughts!

:wave: Thank you Susan!

Hi Soni! Not totally without reference on this one. I am working from two different references but have strayed a bit even from those, lol. I will post the two later or tomorrow. I'll have to figure out how to get one of them post-able. Thanks so much for the encouragement!

:wave: Thank you Kathleen and Lillian!

:wave: Hi Howard! A garden trug is what the girl in the reference is carrying and may be what I end up using. I'm still going to have to figure out what to do with her left arm though as it is for some reason gone in the picture. Thanks for taking a look and posting your idea!

Here's the update after another hour or so trying to lighten the back trees. I'm going to have to put it up for now as company is coming. Hopefully will be back to this later tonight; it's been really enjoyable!

Thanks again everyone!:D



Sorry for the blurry picture. I tried at least a dozen times and this was the best I could get today.

04-12-2008, 02:08 PM
Really lovely work. My eye moves very easily through this one.

04-12-2008, 02:35 PM
Wow, that really added some distance and softness back there. Looking good. A classic quality to the whole piece.

Thomas Greaves
04-12-2008, 03:14 PM
Elizabeth, I think you need to decide what is your centre of interest. As things stand at the moment, there is competition between the girl and the shed, due to their similar light values and such a strong colour. With such a relative spatial distance between them it's causing a contradiction. I agree that the extra (marvellous) work you have done on the background trees has improved the depth of the scene, and would suggest that you tone down the shed colour also, to bring it into harmony. I think foreground value contrasts need to be heightened also, to match the brightness of the figure.
This isn't an easy composition, due to the high perspective viewpoint, but so far you are doing exceedingly well with it.

04-12-2008, 04:49 PM
Oh Wow Elizabeth I love this painting... All that detail amazing! :)

04-12-2008, 05:57 PM
This is going to be a treasure of a painting - it already has a lovely atmosphere and i know you will do amazingly well with it:clap:

04-12-2008, 06:15 PM
I have come back to this several times and I think it is will be lovely. I just have this problem with the left side of the shed and that light spot in the ground to the left of that. Somehow that part is not working for me and is detracting from the rest. It's like that tree there is half in light and half in dark. Something isn't reading right there but I am having trouble putting my finger on what it is. Sorry wish I could be more helpful.

04-12-2008, 07:07 PM
I have to agree with Linda and Thomas on this - I agree about lightening the background - and also my first impression is, which is the focal point? Shed or girl. Your title suggests the girl - that would be appropriate. Why not subdue the intensity/saturation of the red shed?

Also, the foliage around the shed presently seems too heavy - I can see that you're probably going to lighten that up too along with the background.

Looks like it's going to be a lovely scene Elizabeth.

04-12-2008, 08:28 PM
Looks great, Elizabeth. Another thing to consider is widening the path at the foreground and then it narrows towards the girl and so on to the shed - giving a sense of distance?

04-12-2008, 11:04 PM
This is already so beautiful.

04-13-2008, 07:24 AM
:wave: Thank you, Debbie, Janet, Ruth and Tracey! I appreciate so much your kind comments and encouragement!

:wave: Hi Linda! Glad you popped back in to check up on me. I'm happy the far trees read better now. Thank you again for the spot-on suggestion.

:wave: Hi Thomas! I can always count on you to be honest (which I very much appreciate) and I must say, toning down the shed was exactly what was needed. I'll post an update below. I haven't worked much on the foreground since the underpainting/initial strokes but I will definitely keep in mind the suggestion for that area when I do. Thank you so much!

:wave: Hi Gayle! I think it's VERY helpful to be pointed in the direction of something that's not working. Thank you so much! I worked a bit on the general area that was nagging at you (it was bothering me too, lol). Let me know if it's better. I'm still fussing there.

:wave: Hi Celeste! The shed has been subdued, but I'm still working on making the area around it less heavy. What happened was, I initially made it too big and added strong darks to obliterate the original lines. Hopefully in the end, I'll be able to make it look right. Thanks so much for the suggestions and encouragement.

:wave: Hi EP! Hummmm. I will try and widen the path a bit in the fore. I tend to agree that it would add some distance. I had already narrowed toward the shed hoping that would do the trick. Thanks for helping me to improve this painting and for the thumbs up on the overall!

Thanks to all for looking and for hanging in there with me! :D Here's the update:



04-13-2008, 07:56 AM
maybe the area to the left of the building should be water. :D

Be easy, I just watched bob ross on public tv, everything he does has water. :D

I like it as is, it looks like something one of those famous painters would have done, Id sure like to have seen you paint this one to learn how you created it.

04-13-2008, 08:11 AM
Hi Elizabeth! Your painting is coming along beautifully and you have received some great suggestions. Muting the color on the building helped to bring the areas more in sync. When I look I your painting I think of a woman walking from her gardening shed, after a busy morning weeding, toward the main house. Your painting looks so close to finished, perhaps accentuating a few deeper shadows across the path to provide contrast for the light that is on the woman's face. Looking forward to your next update. :)

04-13-2008, 08:29 AM
This is looking fabulous. :) I like the field back there. I don't think you need to add water. As it is now, you've got the girl, the shed, and the flowers for interest. It's enough, imo.

One thought regarding the shrubs along the left side of the path: The value of the shadows stay the same all the way back to the shed. You might want to consider lightening them further up the path.

04-13-2008, 08:30 AM
I like your painting. I particularly like the overall structural composition and the form shadows on the girl's dress.

04-13-2008, 10:59 AM
Watching with interest. This is so lovely and timeless, and the scene is so inviting. I like that space on the left side, it looks like a opening to go exploring.

04-13-2008, 12:34 PM
I can feel the warm sun and smell nature just by looking at it...I think this is going to be one of my favorites of your work. I can't imagine how much more you want to do but I will be awaiting it with excitement :)

04-13-2008, 05:16 PM
The shed looks better now and the girl is becoming more the focus, I like it Elizabeth.

04-13-2008, 05:25 PM
Oh excellent job! Now my eye is not drawn to that area and the whole area in the back has become supportive to the girl who now is emerging as the focal point. This is such a charming piece! It reminds me of those reporductions of old fashioned cards you pay a fortune for!
It's really very pretty! I admire your ability with landcscapes.

Li'l Brown
04-13-2008, 05:30 PM
Elizabeth I do love your style. Have you done any WIPs that I might be able to go back and have a look at? This one is just gorgeous!


04-13-2008, 08:42 PM
:wave: Thank you, JWT! I did actually think about putting water in that spot but decided against it. I'm hoping the grass works though I'm still not 100% sold.

:wave: Hi Ann! I like your idea of stronger shadows across the path, and seems right as the sun would be casting shadows from the grass. I'll work on that when I get back to the figure area. Thanks for the suggestion and for the lovely thoughts on the painting in general.

:wave: Hi Linda! I worked on that center area today, shadows, grass, flowers and shrubs. Hopefully the shadows are better. I really appreciate your sticking with me on this!

:wave: Hi Arlene! Thanks for your post! I like the light on the figure too and hope to retain it once I start fiddling with her, lol!

:wave: Thanks Celeste! It's good to know I'm on the right track!I appreciate your popping back in to see the progress and keep me on the straight and narrow, lol!

:wave: Hi Gayle! I was hoping you'd pop back in and let me know about the area you pointed out. Thanks too for the kind comments about my landscapes and this painting overall.

:wave: Hi Jesslyn! Thank you so much! I'm really glad you like my painting! I think I only have one landscape with progress pictures. Not really a wip, but there are steps pictures to look at. Here's the link: Lanscape
:wave: Hi Soni! What a nice comment. I'm glad you like this one. I hope it turns out in the end. I keep thinking I'm ruining it. Thanks for checking in again. I appreciate your support and encouragement very much. I remembered today to round up the references for you to see. Here's the link to the one in the reference library: Reference 1. (http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=129)

The other one is a photo my sister sent me of her yard:


Thanks for your support and encouragement everyone! I have gotten to the point where progress is slow. Here's the latest update!



04-13-2008, 10:19 PM
Looking good Elizabeth! I like that it invites the viewer to travel along the path with the girl. Will be watching for the finale!

04-14-2008, 09:01 AM
I don't think it needs a thing. I loved this from the first picture you posted...It is very appealing and you just have to enjoy looking at it

04-14-2008, 01:57 PM
Hi Elizabeth. Beautiful work. You're gonna kick me, but I think you lightened the shadows too much in the foreground. I suggest that you darken the shadows again, about 1/3 way up from the bottom. Take a look at your sister's pic. The shadows at the bottom are darker in value than those up near the top of the pic.

04-19-2008, 10:30 AM
:wave: Thank Lulu! I'm glad to know I'm on the right path with the path, lol! I am still learning about these kinds of things, like helping the viewer to stick around a while. :D

:wave: Thanks Aggie! I'm glad you like this, even in it's unfinished state. I have tendency to take a painting too far, so you may have been right for me to have stopped there. I'm posting the final in a few minutes so I will let you and the others be the judge. Thanks again for your post!:D

:wave: Hi Linda! Oh no, I'm never bothered at all when someone lends me an eye, hehehehe. I tried to deepen the shadows. If it still needs work, I hope you'll let me know, even after my 100th try. Thank you so much!:D


04-19-2008, 10:33 AM
OK, here is what I think is the final version. I struggled long and hard with the figure but feel there is still improvement that could be made. I'm not sure, however, if I can pull it off at the level I'm at right now. If you have suggestions though, please share them with me. Like I always hear around here, it's only paint. :lol: Too, there's no rush on this. Thanks for all your help and encouragement along the way on this! :D




04-19-2008, 10:40 AM
WOW Elizabeth!! this is Brilliant!! I love the details in the flowers, the Girl is done so well with the light reflecting and shadows on her.. simply gorgeous!! VERY well done!!

04-19-2008, 11:09 AM
Very pretty Elizabeth - the little girl is so well done and stands out nicely.

04-19-2008, 12:06 PM
I like it, and personally, I think it is done!
Job well done Elizabeth, this one did have a long path to completion.


04-19-2008, 12:25 PM
Hi Elizabeth :)
This turned out gorgeous...I just knew it!! Love the flowers, sunlight and shadow areas...aehm one question though - did you decide towards the end to let the girl walk towards the viewer or was that your idea all along? I always saw her walking towards the house and didn't expect to see her upfront lol
Anyway you did a beautiful job on her including the basket and the flowers...would like to give you a thumbs up but my smilies seem to be on strike today!?

04-19-2008, 01:09 PM
Wonderful finish Elizabeth! I also was expecting the girl to be walking in the other direction. Either way, it works great! Fantastic job!!

04-19-2008, 03:07 PM
beautiful, I love the highlight across the path. brilliant!

04-19-2008, 03:11 PM
Fabulous finish! I love the subtle expression on the girl's face in the close-up. :) I also like the way you brightened the foliage around her, giving her a "frame" as the focal. A very nostaligic feeling to this painting.

04-19-2008, 03:18 PM
Love the ambience of this painting with its play of light and shadow. Well done on that grass too. Good job, Elizabeth!

04-19-2008, 04:03 PM
Elizabeth, the changes that you have made are fantastic! Beautiful painting!:clap: :clap: :clap:

04-19-2008, 04:32 PM
what a wonderful magical feel this painting has Eizabeth - you have done beautifully!!!!
the girl is charming - love the subtle colouring you used.

04-19-2008, 04:58 PM
Bravo, Elizabeth. The girl is fine. Right up to the way her eyes are looking.:thumbsup:

04-19-2008, 04:58 PM
This is lovely, Elizabeth. I love the colours. You've done it so very well.

It has a beautiful, entrancing, inviting feel to it.

Georgi :cat:

04-19-2008, 08:01 PM

04-20-2008, 05:54 AM
:wave: Thank you Kathie, Celeste, Kathleen, Soni, Lillian, Colleen, Linda, Ann, Janet, Ruth, Peter, Georgi and Michelle! :D :D :D

:wave:Soni - Thanks for the thumbs up on the overall! As for her direction, she was always walking toward the front, though in the initial version her head was turned to the left side of the painting. I hadn't thought to have her walking toward the shed. Now that you've mentioned it, it would have probably worked better that way. Hummmmm. :D

Thanks again everyone for your support and encouragement on this one. I have put it aside for now and am letting it percolate for a while. :lol:


04-20-2008, 06:34 AM
This turned out sooooo great.

04-20-2008, 06:56 AM
Love the soft,classical atmosphere you have created with your painting:)

04-20-2008, 07:53 AM
I'm glad you discussed the direction of the girl. I had thought she was walking toward the shed until almost the end. The only problem I have (and it is small) is the direction her eyes appear to be looking. They seem, at least on my screen, to be focused to her immediate left rather than ahead of her. It is quite possible that it's a distortion but check it out.
Otherwise it's perfect!

04-20-2008, 09:00 AM
:wave: Thank you so much Tracey and Anthony! :D

:wave: Gayle - I wasn't sold on the direction of the eyes either to be honest. I'll work on that. Thanks for the suggestion and thumbs up otherwise! :D


04-20-2008, 09:30 AM
:wave: Good morning
Oh no it's just perfect the way it is...I was just curious to know what your thought process on the direction of the figure was. She wasn't defined until the end and sometimes it's just interesting how different people read different things into an image that hasn't quite taken it's final forms. As for the eyes, I think they are just fine...makes you wonder what she thinks or even laid her eyes on.
It's done - sign it, frame it hang it :D cause who knows, if you keep on working on it I might see her running off to the side :lol:

Li'l Brown
04-20-2008, 10:20 AM
Lovely painting Elizabeth! (Funny I also expected her to be walking toward the shed). Lots to keep you looking in this one :)