Would you agree that I should change the title of these “Day” Challenges to “(Name of Subject) Project?” I haven’t exactly followed the “15 Days”, perhaps we could consider them business working days, LOL!
For Day 14, I concentrated on Gum Trees painting two of them. Trunks of this specimen have a smoother bark with fascinating colors (ranging from very light to very dark rust) – they are gorgeous, and since I’ve always wanted to paint them the challenge was a good opportunity.
Painting these trees was harder than what I thought – perhaps because they’re smaller paintings and in addition, the sky and background colors needed to be a bit darker in blue-gray so that the tree didn’t merge with the background. Whether it was a sunny day or cloudy, the values played a prominent role in both these pieces. I only realized this after I painted the first painting so I decided to try my hand on a second immediately afterward.
Gum Tree #2: 5×7 light gray tinted Mi-Teintes pastel paper. Instead of blending too much, I let the white specs show through in the paper, it seemed to help the scene w/distance. I experimented first by masking in the tree trunk, this allowed me to work on the entire painting keeping the trunk area clean – once finished, the masking tape was peeled off and the tree was painted in. In this painting the sky and background were layered with white first, then blues, cool-grays and warm-grays – this process was repeated several times to allow mid-range values so the tree trunk lights and darks stood out. There is a straight-line fence painted in, barely there because of the white specs – so it’s giving the impression that helps with the distance.
Gum Tree #1: 9×6 painted on cream tinted Mi-Teintes pastel paper. Here are the things I noticed and if I painted the scene again I’d do the following: create more distinction between the sky and background than the tree trunk, emphasize more rust color in the pathway, too many lower branches – knocking a few off would give the tree more height, and finally the foreground green should be tamed – I couldn’t scrap off the green as it stained the paper. Not my favorite painting, was completed yesterday.
I learned a lot from painting both these scenes that I’ll be able to apply to other landscapes. Loosely used two photographs from my friend Ro Lovelock of pmp, who by the way is a fantastic artist. Thanks for checking in . . .