The Stages of a Painting's Developement
I begin laying color in the lit areas of the painting in much the same
manner as I did the previous day with the shadows. One thing that is done
differently is that I am careful to put down colors that conform to the
effects of atmosphere. By this I mean that I take into consideration the
gradations with more accuracy. Whatever the color scheme, hues and values
soften as your eye travels into the distance. In this same way tints become
more blue as the landscape recedes. Here I am using a sunset palette on
the canyon, so the middle distance will be reds fading to roses as the
eye moves to the back, while oranges and yellows are added as the landscape
moves closer to the viewer. I am still working my colors as flat areas,
only using variations in color as I move from one land mass to another.
The same approach of working from the back to the foreground is used. This
way I can easily warm my colors in a systematic fashion as I work forward.
In these early stages of the painting, I work with fairly thick paint. In other words, using just enough thinner in the paint to create a buttery consistency that can still hold its shape when applied. I want to achieve good coverage on the canvas and build some textural qualities with the brush strokes. I don't glob on the paint, but I do like to work wet on wet, so this retains my ability to work back into the paint for the next day or so. Also, I feel that a certain amount of paint is necessary so that the pigment can react correctly with light and other pigments. While on this subject I just want to advise everyone to use top quality paints. Cheap paints do not hold their color over time. A good test is to check the color of the paint that has dried and collected around the mouth of the tube when the tube is almost empty. That paint has had a chance to dry, if the color looks dull or dark next to the fresh paint in the tube, then change brands.
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