Friday, 21 October 2011

2nd Lesson - How to Oil Paint A Soft Focus Background

Subjects further away lose their intensity of colour, focus and sharp contrasts.  Cool colours help to create distance.  The sky is darker at the top and fades as it recedes towards the horizon.  So with a mix of Cobalt Blue and white, we paint from the top, adding white as we proceed down the canvas.  Add wispy clouds with white, feathering off into the wet paint.  Clouds are bigger and fluffier at the top and become smaller, closer together and flatter towards the horizon.  Give them some shadow underneath with a purpley blue (Cobalt, White and a touch of Permanent Rose).

  The mountains are a very soft purple (one shade darker than the sky).  We've used some Cadmium Yellow Deep and a touch of Red Gold to bring out some greens as the mountains come forward.  While the paint is wet, brush the tops of the mountains into the sky to soften any hard edges.  You can use a dry, soft brush to go over everything in a criss-cross fashion very lightly to further blur any edges.  The mountains should be lighter at the top and darker towards the bottom, as this is closer to the viewer.

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