Sunday, August 10, 2014

Annual Subjects

Choosing subjects is an eternal concern for realistic painters.  But at certain times of the year, the matter of picking a subject is made easier by the reappearance of certain items.  In August here in Maine, for me it's the  blooming of Queen Anne's Lace.

I know it's a weed, but its lacey quality appeals to me.  How to achieve that delicate look is a problem that I  choose to solve without the use of any masking agent.  Rather, I drag a dry brush around the half-dome shape of the flower.  Then  I use a very small rigger to dot some pinpoints in the interior or along the edges.  Finally, I add some shading to give a rounded, three dimensional feel.

The background surrounding the flowers has sometimes been a problem.  In the past I've darkened the area around the flowers in a uniform dark value.  Nowadays, I darken only one side and gradate to a mid-tone by the time I get to the other side or the underside of the flowers. 

Here are two examples of the ongoing August series.

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