Thursday, 20 April 2017

Painting a Sunset on Board

My son bought me this round board for Xmas last year.  I had to give it several layers of ghesso before I started to use my oils.  It is very smooth and takes a bit to get used to as I always paint on canvas.  It is a little harder to blend the colours on the board, and by the looks of it, will need to do a second layer. 

Saturday, 18 March 2017

"Rainbow in the Magnolia"

I finished painting the leaves in the far right corner, using clean, bright colours.  I even added some pure light blues (the same ones used in the bird and the background) to brighten them up.  I actually went back into the background at the last minute and feathered off some of the sharper lines that were standing out too much.  Then I called it - Finished.

I named the painting "Rainbow in the Magnolia".  I know Magnolias aren't native to Australia, but this tree has a special significance for me and all my visiting birds love to sit in it.  Anyway, this one is a keeper as I will be doing more birds perched in my Magnolia.

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Painting Leaves with Strong Highlights

I'm trying to give the leaves in this painting a strong, translucent glow.  To do this, the highlights need to be fairly strong and clean - straight from the tube even.  For the green highlights, I'm using Chrome Green and the yellows are Cadmium Yellow.  Don't over-use your white as this washes the colours out.

Saturday, 25 February 2017

New Portrait Painting

I've begun to draw up my next portrait painting of the grandkids.  Since the last one was finished, I have two more kids to add to the picture!

This is a rough sketch of the composition on an A4 piece of paper, taken from a photo shoot I did one afternoon with the kids.  I took about 200 photos in all and picked out the best of some of them.  I'm in the middle of re-drawing the composition on to my canvas which is a fairly large 101 x 76 cm.

Monday, 20 February 2017

Painting Leaves

The leaves in the foreground should be painted a little soft, so that the viewer can look over them and into the painting, resting their eyes on the focal point.  I have used the same colours as the bird to help achieve this, blending into the bird's colours.  I think the most important thing about painting the leaves in this painting, is the strong highlights and soft, dark shadows.

Sunday, 12 February 2017

How to Paint Birds' Feet

I painted the branch at the same time as the bird's feet so that I could get the contrast of the feet right.  The light is very strong on the bird's left, so in order to get that highlight light enough without making it white and therefore losing it's colour, I painted the branch as dark as I could to get that highlight to pop out.

I painted in the darks first with Ultramarine Blue and Cadmium Red and then the midtone shadows.  The highlights are very light pinks, and very light blues - put a lot of colour into your greys and blacks so that they don't appear too dull.

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Follow the Directional Growth of Feathers

You can now see in this photo how important it is to get the direction of the feathers right.  It gives the bird depth and solidity, especially in that orange chest.  Remember to do just the one colour section at a time, so the colours don't become muddy.