View Full Version : Experimenting with textured paper-Morning Fog Part I

Adriana Meiss
07-31-2008, 08:24 PM
In my quest to learn how to have a lighter hand with pastels I decided to try some old papers I had. As soon as I saw the purple paper I knew the painting I wanted to do: a photo I had printed from the RL taken by Rosic (Foggy Morning). The challenge was the texture of the paper, Strathmore 107-116. Size 12x18

Click to enlarge.
402807I used a pale green Nupastel to place the trees, etc. Then I started with the fog using an off white Mt Vision. At this point I'm just trying to get a feel for the paper. The texture looks like holes, but it's more like lines in both directions. I've also started to think more carefully about the olive greens, doing a color check at the edge before applying it. No blending with fingers so far!

402809I had applied more off white in the background but it still looked so grainy that I decided to use my fingers. Once the tooth got a little bit clogged I did not have to do it again. The darkest colors were applied. When working on the foreground tree I was pushing he small piece of Nupastel so hard that it broke in half, but nothing happened to the paper. I've added some grayish greens in the distance, and light gray to the focal area. I'm done with the fog, so I've started adding more trees and playing with greens for the foreground.

402810Sorry this one came out blurry. I'm practically done with the foliage in the middle and background, so the tough part is coming. I added teal to the grass and reddish purple to the tree stems. When working the dark areas of the stems I tried to blend with my fingers. Right away I noticed how the luster of the pigment diminished, so no fingers from this point on.

402812At this stage I had to be careful not to go for my usual bright greens, so in my mind I was reciting "keep it low key, keep it low key."

402811This is the final one. But now that I see it here I think the fence should be behind the two trees, the yellow of the leaves should be toned down (more like the green in the previous one), and the tree stems in the middle ground should be lighten to give the idea of thick fog.

It took me about two and a-half-hours and the 25 different colors you see on the right border. If I were to do this on a sanded paper I would go for a more finished look. In general terms I think this worked because I used the right color of paper for this kind of scene.

I'm starting to like this paper! I still have a sheet in Nordic Blue (teal) and another in olive green…

It's still on the easel so comments are welcome.

07-31-2008, 10:00 PM
I had tried this one is watercolor but it is much more impressive in pastel and your purple paper adds to it beautifully. I like this a lot...very well done! I like the texture also.

07-31-2008, 10:29 PM
Well I must say that this has a real feeling of a foggy morning. Depth comp. color choices very good. I like the fence as is , I think it adds interest. the slant of a few trees is nice and the use of the road color in the 2 trees in the distants helps lead me up the road to explore.

07-31-2008, 10:40 PM
Very well developed exercise, nicely done!

08-01-2008, 12:06 AM
The first one looks like a good, albeit large, notan...:D I just had to say that.

It's very well done, tho it looks as if you are still struggling with your greens. It may be the temperature. What would happen if you scumbled a warm violet in places on the grass, and maybe altered some of the tree greens with a grayer green in the same value?

pastel lover
08-01-2008, 02:33 AM
Hi Adrianna,

My opion is take it off the easel & frame it. Looks great! Especially like the fog, kind of mysterious...but not ominous (sp?). Thanks very much for the explanation on how you paint skies. I am going to give it a try.


08-01-2008, 05:56 AM
This is very beautiful, Adriana!! :clap:
Really foggy and a wonderful slightly "spooky" mood. I love it.

08-01-2008, 07:12 AM
The back light of the fog is nice, I do agree about the greens, seem a bit too cool overall.

08-01-2008, 08:11 AM
I like the mood very much. Your style is great. The cool greens could have a touch of the complement paints.

Donna T
08-01-2008, 11:32 AM
I'm so glad you posted this, Adriana. I took a photo of a similar kind of foggy scene and was wondering if the paper I was planning to use would work. It has a warm, violet-gray tone which looks very much like yours. You really got the foggy effect with this! I hope the discussion of whether to use warmer or cooler greens will continue, as this is something which totally stumps me. If fog is made up of little droplets of water and many of these droplets cause a cooling effect I can see where maybe the greens would look cooler. But, depending on the time of year and location, fog can be very warm and reflect the sun which is gradually overpowering it ... so couldn't the greens have a warmer cast? :confused: Can anyone explain this?


Paula Ford
08-01-2008, 01:08 PM
Adriana, Thanks for the wip! This is a great painting. I love the atmosphere and the misty/foggy-ness of it. Wonderful work!

Adriana Meiss
08-01-2008, 05:43 PM
Thank you all for your comments; I really appreciate it!

Donna, I'm glad this helped in your selection of color paper.
I'm constantly getting into trouble with cool and warm greens :mad:

You are right about fog. Most people associate fog with cool temperatures, and in a way it is so, but everything is relative.
Fog is really a low cloud (but with water droplets instead of crystals), and clouds not necessarily cover large expanses of land, meaning that there could be pockets in low areas. So, if you are in one of these pockets, it is possible to see bright, warm fog if the sun is shining above this bubble of fog. I've seen this effect early in the morning when I walk in the park, usually after a rainy, cool night. Of course, the fog is not thick, but you feel a hazy effect in the atmosphere. I've taken photos in this situation and I get a "glory effect": beams of light through the trees. Really beautiful. If you were to compare this situation with no fog at all, the bright, warm fog is still cooler than no fog.

When the fog covers a larger area, the effect is much different. Of course it also depends on the vertical thickness of fog, but in general it has a marked cooling effect. This is when fog looks spooky to some.

In a way it's similar to a rainy day: there are bright rainy days, and there are dark rainy days.

I think the yellow greens I used contradict the effect I wanted to get, so I'll do what Sonni suggested.

Sonni, are you telling me I've been doing giant notans without knowing? :lol: I usually start my painting this way.
Rudi, thank you for making me think about compliments.

08-02-2008, 02:48 AM
Adriana, I love this! The colors and the light behind the fog are simply marvelous!! Thank you for sharing the wip with us! I'm going to mark this one. One of these days I want to do some landscapes and seascapes with fog and yours is excellent.


08-02-2008, 07:36 AM
I do like this, however for me the colors are a little off? I have to be honest in saying that the third one was closer in color that I would have liked. I realize that it was not finished, but the tone was right to me...just my opinion.
Love the feeling in this!

08-02-2008, 12:25 PM
I do like the mood, the feel, of this. I think your haziness in the bg is very effective. I have to agree with the others who say your greens (and yellows) are still too bright. The greens in the foreground look like they're strong and unadulterated, straight off the stick, in light to midtones not too far distant from their original near-pure-pigment state. My experience in fog has been that no color is that saturated, and I think that the suggestion to scumble over with compliments is a good one.

I do really like this. I look forward to seeing more!