Thursday, March 12, 2009

Going Cool

The last few days have been heavy overcast, rain and windy.  So I decided to paint the cool.  There was no warm light on the fields at Scottsdale.  I began by altering my palette to lean cool.  Then I composed a thumbnail along with a few notes and  5 colour masses, all cool colours.

Thumbnail with colour mass notes

Next came a cool transparent wash of ultramarine and magenta.  Into this I massed in the 5 colour shapes with diffeent cool colours to keep them separated, lavender, ultramarine, cerulean, viridian and magenta wet in wet.  Then the values and colours were altered to approach what I saw in the masses.

Fence Line in Overcast, 6x8, oil on board, early stages

The next step was adjusting the clours within the shapes to reflect what I saw at that stage.  The various colours of the light spectrum become more apparent as one sneaks up on the painting comparing the colours for value, hue, and intensity.  You add colour into the wet paint to reflect what is seen.  As one proceeds one sees more and so forth.  There is no formula, just paint what you see.  That helps train the eye and it becomes more sensitive over time.

Fence Line in Overcast, ready for final stage

The next stage would be edge management and final colour adjustments.  You can see where this is going.  The cool colours seem to give a peaceful relaxed aura.

For this exercise I used a #12 hogs bristle flat brush, a #6 hogs bristle round, and a palette knife.  The palette consisted of pigments representing the spectrum but with a cool orientation.  It consisted of lavender, ultramarine, cerulean blue, viridian, cadmium lemon yellow, cadmium orange, and magenta.  I replaced alizarine and cadmium red middle by adding lavender, cerulean, and magenta.  It took some time to get on to the new colour mixtures and figure out the mixing of earth hues.

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