To prove the benefits of working from photos, at least in the case of fidgety animals, I spent an hour or so adding to the painting of Flint frolicking at the beach today. I began with his tail, which almost finished the session in an instant… I’m sure I’m not the only person that thinks it didn’t work well and that it’s going to need a repair job!
Following that I think I must have relaxed, or given up or something… I dabbled at his red flashes, thinking they were too pink, and mixed some blacks to add in.
It’s an interesting process mixing black… I’ve learnt a lot recently & now understand that any combination of red, green and blue will make a shade of black. But to get the right shade, one that suits the palette of colours you’re using as well as the subject, can be much harder.
I wanted something that was a really good solid black, but also hoped to reflect the limited palette of the sand and sea I had already created. This black turned out to be Indigo, Burnt Umber and a very slight touch of crimson. I also tried to inject a bit of extra Indigo here and there to pick up the sea colours. I think it’s looking good and just needs a few darker bits here and there.
His freckles were a worry, but actually turned out to be great fun. I was concentrating so hard, pushing paint around, that when I stopped and stood another foot away I was amazed to find how realistic the painting actually looked. It’s so interesting that you can literally get too close and then can’t see properly. I thought it was loose and very splotchy this time, then I sit back & it’s almost a photograph!!