Friday, July 17, 2009

Winter Tree Studies

Here are some winter tree studies I've been working on. I'm using a book called Drawing Towards Watercolor by Peter Woolley, with the hope that it will help me improve my pleine air technique, as well as, my regular paintings. My challenge is learning to simplify, simplify, simplify!

In the collaged picture above the idea was to practice sketching basic bare trees, looking at their structure and finally adding watercolor. A couple of the samples play with the idea of creating depth by painting the pale branches over a damp background and then adding the darker foreground branches when the paper has dried. The top right corner shows graduating from dark colors to light, warm colors as the branch gets thinner and thinner to give the effect that light is hitting the tiny ends.

The final painting was done on watercolor canvas. This was the first time I've used this product and I found it a bit difficult to control. My sky was the hardest, I couldn't seem to get a nice soft blended look. Also, when you try to put down subsequent layers the previous layer tries to lift off. It is really easy to get back to a crisp, hard-edged white.

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