Does anyone have any enlightening and wise advice on painting backgrounds? I spent an hour or so this afternoon trying to make the one here work and I’m less than thrilled with the results…
I began with a simple plan in mind, as mentioned yesterday, not to think too much during the process and just throw some paint in, not getting hung up on detail. A few areas of the bird received another glaze and some extra detail without any pain and he got a branch to hold with his new foot.
Unfortunately, despite (or maybe because of!) lots of mixing, all the greens of the leaves came out the same and I lost the brilliance of the earlier stage. A (dubious) benefit of this was the opportunity to experiment with some repair work, lifting out a few areas with clean water and a little cotton wool to suggest lighter leaves.
That’s where I stopped. I think my idea of not planning needs to be planned better as I’m not seeing well enough for it to work instinctively. I realised too late that leaves needed to go across his belly as his second leg was behind foliage that I hadn’t accounted for. I’m also beginning to see that the lighter values of yesterday’s wash actually made the lorikeet pop out more and painting a darker background, as in the photo, doesn’t work nearly as well.
So, I’m looking forward to the next challenge, and the chance to develop these skills. A great quote I read today by Jean Haines is reminding me to stay positive:
No matter who you are as an artist or where you are in your art journey, you always believe your next painting will be better!