Friday, February 24, 2012

One More Hay Bale, pastel, 9 x 12
Today's paint-along demo for a private class this morning. In my weekly group classes we've been focusing on developing a specific color palette to use before starting, so that's what we did with today's painting.  I admit, sometimes it's fun to just dive into a painting and let it evolve. But I find that if I establish my color palette first, and try to stick to it, it forces me to use a limited palette (less chance of mud!) and usually creates better color harmony.

When planning my color palette, I scribble out little color swatches on a piece of scrap paper, preferably a little spare piece from the same paper/surface that I'll be working on.

First I just randomly scribble out some initial guesses to see what looks good next to what, and then narrow it down to create a more organized group of color swatches.  Although I try not to add too many more colors or change my mind and go in a different color direction, I'll still certainly need to go back into my pastel box to tweak things a bit with more accurate values and color temperatures once I get the painting going.  But I mainly try to stick with the same color families when I add to it.

For this painting, working on Uart paper, I started with a monochromatic underpainting using a dark blue Nupastel and an alcohol wash.

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