Friday, November 13, 2009

Challenge - Airport Travelers

Airport Travelers challenge from Different Strokes From Different Folks
7" x 7" acrylic on masonite panel

I did this one in two stages. First, I painted the scene in 5 values only: black, white, light gray, medium gray, dark gray. However, I used green instead of gray—Hookers Green with some Burnt Sienna to tone it down. I was going for a graphic approach, in fact at first I was leaving a little white space between the areas. It looked quite a bit like a paint-by-numbers :)

I scanned that step, as I wasn't sure whether to leave it as-is or add color. Then I used watercolor pencils to put just a slight warm or cool cast on different areas, and a few denser areas of color, such as the red bag and the yellow hair.

It's such a dark photo, with high contrast. I found the five values were quite extreme: the two lightest were very far away from the three darkest, and the middle value was still very dark. I cheated a little bit on the floor—really it was the same value as the darkest shadows, but I wanted it to separate from the suits, so I mixed up a half-step value for it, somewhere between 4 and 5. I think adding the cool and warm colors helped bring out some definition from the dark areas, although I like the monotone of the all-green version.


  1. Very unique entry, thanks for sharing the values you used. It's quite evident that you did a lot of studying of the photo before you "jumped in"!

  2. This is really wonderful. I love the subtlety of the color, and your values are spot on. Fantastic!

  3. Great entry for DSFDF. Thanks for the extra details.

  4. Great job on this one. Your value study really paid off.


I love to read your comments - thanks for your feedback!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...