Friday, October 26, 2012

Forcing the Lights

These bridgehouses are in Bad Kreuznach, Germany where I taught English at a Defense Department school in the early '70's.

Forcing the lights requires painting the majority of the painting in middle dark midtones to dark values.  The tricky part of this is getting a dark enough value in the first wash.  The white paper can fool you into thinking that the first wash is darker than it really is.  Ed Whitney used to say that if it looks like it's right when it's wet, it's wrong. 

Surrounding the lights with midtone and dark vlaues will force the lights into a more dramatic effect. 

In this painting, I also decided that the lights would be a warm yellow.  Yellow's complement is violet, so that determined the coolor on the central bridgehouse.

Go bold in the first wash, and surround the lights with dark midtones.  Add the darks, and that will force the lights for a dramatic lighting effect.

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