View Full Version : Underwater Rocks
10-03-2002, 08:07 AM
I did this based upon a lesson on William Powell's website. It's cheap student-grade acrylic on 16x20 canvas.
From far away it looks okay, but up close it's very messy. But the main problem is that the glazing didn't work out; there are streaks everywhere. The portion of the rocks under water are way too dark. I am considering gessoing over to re-use the canvas.
It's not all a lost effort. One day I will re-do this to the potential that is there. I like the overall idea of it all.
Any suggestions for improvement welcome.
10-03-2002, 10:18 AM
Patrick, actually I think it is pretty good...I think that if you to add some more color to the top portions of the rock so to speak"wet" spots( burnt sienna?) it would make it look more natural, also more ireggular surface of the rock may help.:)
10-03-2002, 11:02 AM
Domer, you've definitely caught the illusion of the water here-- it's the rocks themselves that are visually confusing. I think they would more clearly read as rocks if there were more color & slight value variations on the parts above the water's surface, less regularity to their shapes both above and below the water surface, and just a bit of value & color variation of the parts below the surface, to indicate irregularities in the surfaces.
10-03-2002, 08:17 PM
Thanks Julia and Lisa. I originally intended to make the rocks more detailed (cracks, more rough, irregular shape) but I just wanted to get it done quickly since it wasn't going too well. But it was a good learning experience in glazing; this was my first real attempt at glazing, and hopefully I can carry what I learned into other future paintings. One thing I learned is not to glaze with a bristle brush! I'll need to buy a glazing brush.
10-03-2002, 11:26 PM
Domer all is not lost, IMHO you can do a save on these rocks and have a good painting out of this. It has already been identified that the rocks need to have more bumps and groves in them. Some dry brush scumbling and some knife work will have these turned into some rocks with character. Go for it and see where it takes you as you say you can always gesso over it if you do not like the results.
I think it looks great. Nice job Domer
10-04-2002, 04:01 AM
Yea Domer .. go for the gusto .. nothing to lose and knowledge to gain .. what is the reference site for the study .. would like to have a look at the lesson.
10-04-2002, 11:59 PM
Thanks Rich, Dave, and Wayne...I appreciate all comments. Wayne, that lesson is right here; I think you'll like it:
10-05-2002, 07:15 AM
thank you .. sure seems like a lot of work .. :D
10-11-2002, 01:17 PM
Hey Domer, Don't be so hard on yourself. You did a great job on this. It is always hard when you are comparing one painting to another painting of the same exact thing.........Bill
10-16-2002, 01:08 AM
Thanks Bill. I agree, whenever I do a painting based upon one by a professional artist, I should be happy if it's even 1/2 as good.
I decided to re-do this one because I thought that if I could just do the glazing better, that by itself would be an imporovement.
I wanted to do the rocks more irregular and jagged, but the jaggedness and cracks weren't turning out well, so I just kept the rocks pretty smooth, which I guess helps with the water-washed look. The water lines didn't turn out great, but this is my first attempt at them.
Still far from perfect, but a modest improvement.
10-20-2002, 02:42 AM
Just a little note, but there should be some distortion between the rocks above water and the rocks below water. They should not line up.
11-22-2002, 06:35 PM
Just cruising around Wet Canvas and came upon your painting of "Rocks Under Water". You did a fine job on this exercise. Your second painting is much lighter in value but still gives the illusion of water depth. If I may suggest, there are several elements that help separate the dry parts from the submerged parts on the rocks. One is more fine detail on the exposed portions and less and somewhat blurry detail on the submerged portions. Also, once the water line (just a light guideline not the glaze) has been established on all rocks and you have placed all of the totally submerged ones, you can easily apply details to any of the rocks before painting in any glazes for water. It's like paint the creek bottom without any water and then, glaze the overall water colors in. Use a wipe-away method to create small underwater pebbles on the creek bottom. This can be done in acrylic by stretching a thin layer of cloth over the end of the brush handle and scraping out the small pebbles before the acrylic bottom colors are dry. Work in small areas at a time...don't try and paint the entire bottom at once in acrylic as you can with oil. Also, when glazing with acrylics, don't thin the paint with water alone. Use little or no water and thin with a good flow medium. This will not only keep the color for the water glaze more fresh looking but also will allow you a slight bit more time to smooth the glaze out.
I find that even with acrylic paints, a soft natural sable hair brush in the bright style works well for glazing...just make certain to keep the brush wet as acrylic will adhere more rapidly to a natural hair than synthetic. There are some very fine synthetic "hair" brushes on the market. Synthetic brushes that have a soft, sable feel as opposed to the more course acrylic bristles work well and hold a good load of glaze color. One style called "White Sable" has fine bristles that work well for glazing in acrylics. Glazing in large areas can also be accomplished with a damp rag and flow solution.
The other finishing element is the surface detail in the water. It takes time but the results are worth it. The surface effects can be painted on into both a wet surface and dry. Blues and whites applied in a streaking and moving pattern give the appearance of a visual surface and also submerge any rocks that the effects are painted over. Pure white is only added as a last highlight.
Also, the depth of color on the first painting could be very effective when surface effects are painted over. The mood would just be a bit deeper and intriguing.
Hope this is of some help to you. I think you took a project that is quite complicated and made a fine work of it.
11-22-2002, 08:21 PM
I like the improvments....still a little dry brush or splaters would help.....nice water effect.
11-22-2002, 08:44 PM
Thank you Alan and William for your comments. I agreee with you both; if I could improve the surface effects, then I would be on to something. William...wow...welcome to Wetcanvas.....I'm a great fan of yours.
your second pix does it for me. i see more realistic 'water' colors and atmosphere. it is softer and blended so that the total pix now looks as one.
11-27-2002, 05:32 PM
Thanks very much for your kind words. I greatly appreciate it.
11-29-2002, 03:41 PM
Just wanted to say quite an improvement from you first images, and I think it's terrific. :clap:
Thank you for sharing your underwater vision. ;)
12-10-2002, 10:46 AM
This lighter one looks much better. I love the composition :D
12-10-2002, 02:26 PM
This is wonderful Domer, nice composition and great work on the water.
12-10-2002, 04:50 PM
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