Monday, March 25, 2013

Maybe My Leaves Are Feathers

oil on hardboard

I'm having a hard time getting a good photo of this painting. The darks are really closing in—in real life there's more depth and color in the trees.

Also, when I set up the auction in DPW, I accidentally typed in a starting bid that is $20 less than it should be. I can't modify an existing auction, so someone will get a great deal :-)

This is a little bit of a departure for me, and I'm happy with the way it came out. I love the way palm trees look, but I don't think I've ever tried to paint them before. This super loose approach worked well for me. Here's my stages:

First I put down an unstructured background of Viridian Green, Magenta, and yellow. This is not meant to correspond in any way with the painting, it's to introduce an element of randomness. Then I sketched in the trees with some thinned Permanent Violet.

Next, I start putting in the dark masses of the trees. I'm using the Violet again, and Phthalo Green. You can see my brushstrokes going all over the place. I was just trying to paint loosely, but realized that actually works pretty well to shape the fronds.

Putting in color and highlights. There's a lot of paint on there; I've completely lost my random colored background. Oh well.

Then, shaping and refining the trees with the sky. You know, this photo taken with my phone looks closer to the original painting than my "good" shot! I might be better off just using the phone.

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