I had been planning to do a painting of the thing I sketched yesterday, but today I just wasn’t feeling it. It’s grey and wet and chilly outside; in such conditions, it’s hard to get in the right frame of mind for painting brilliant sunny summer meadows.
So, instead of painting Yet Another Pastoral Landscape (YAPL?), I decided to take on a challenge: Paint the view from our living room window. I tend to avoid painting man-made things, but there’s inspiration everywhere — even in our bleak suburban neighborhood. There are some interesting reflections in the wet road, and the bright yellow road signs (together with yellow license plates, yellowish headlight reflections, and a yellow construction vehicle) piqued my interest.
Here’s a quick thumbnail done with grey marker and ink (about 2″ x 2.5″), and a pastel underpainting that (very) loosely blocks in the major areas. I sprayed on more isopropyl alcohol than usual, which created some fun drips in the underpainting. Looking forward to continuing work on it after it’s dry.
Added pastels to the charcoal sketch from yesterday. Probably would have turned out better if I had a) spent more time with it and b) actually looked at the reference again before I started, but most of my time was used up to clean my studio.
Did a little more work on the foreground. I think it’s probably safe to call it done now.
[October 27, 2016]
Hmmmm. Is it done? It might be. Need to think on it for a bit.
[October 25, 2016]
Slowly but surely, this is making its way toward completion. Need to do more work on the foreground bush in the lower right; the rest is pretty close, I think.
[October 21, 2016]
Goodness, I’m going slow on this one, aren’t I? But I suppose a trip away and a head cold will do that. It’s hard to paint when I have to a) wear gloves to protect my skin from pigments and b) blow my nose all the time. Very glad I felt better enough to paint again today.
[October 12, 2016]
Finally back at this. Started to layer in some colors in the foreground, keeping it loose — I really want it to feel like fog, so I have to remind myself that details are the enemy!
[October 6, 2016]
Added many layers to the sky. It might not look like much, but there’s actually a lot of pastel on that surface! I wanted a smooth(ish) texture without resorting to blending with my fingers, and that meant filling the tooth of the paper with a lot of pigment. I used blues and violets (and blue-greys, and violet-greys) with various levels of color saturation, but made sure all were the same value; hopefully I succeeded somewhat in creating the muted “glowing” effect I was going for.
[October 5, 2016]
Instead of having multiple posts for the same painting, I’m going to keep editing the same post. That way, each stage of the painting is easy to find. I’ll update the published date each time I add new content to the painting post so its position gets refreshed, and I’ll add the most recent image and the date at the top of each revision. (Unless I change my mind about that and place them at the bottom instead, which is entirely possible.)
It’s been awhile since I’ve done the whole sumi ink underpainting –> layer of monochrome pastel –> alcohol wash thing.
Might be done with this, at this point. The one on the right ended up becoming purely a testing ground, while the one on the left got much more attention. I’m ok with that. Honestly, it worked pretty well to go back and forth for awhile, then pick one to focus on, and use the other one to test colors and techniques.
It’s hard to tell from a photo, but there are so many layers in those mountains. Purples and blues and cyans, even some orange and green.
Onward! Time to…oh. Hmm. It’s already 4:30, isn’t it. I guess it’s time to do some chores, because if I launch into my crazy calligraphy mockup project, I won’t get anything else done. When will I learn to stop planning my day while drinking coffee?!