02 03 Ann Mortimer's Painting Blog: Clematis...first stages 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33

Clematis...first stages

So I took a deep breath and started on the clematis.

Here's my palette with colours mixed for the first wash.

Colours mingled in preparation for  the first wash.

I had aureolin and raw sienna  for my yellows, winsor blue and quinacridone gold to mix the greens, permanent rose, alizarin crimson and indian yellow for the wall in the background and a dark mix of alizarin, blue and some yellow for the stamens and dark areas.  I had a grey mixed with cobalt blue and some alizarin.

First wash

For the background I had to drop colours in for the wall as well as dropping in yellows and greens for the leafy areas.  I had to think ahead and drop in greens where I knew I was going to bring out more leaves in the background which I hadn't actually drawn.  So a lot to think about but as the paper was wet I had quite a long time to decide where to drop in colours.  The flowers were left without colour apart from some shadows dropped in.  Colour drifted into the petals from the surrounding wash but this gives a more authentic look I think.

I let this dry when I thought I'd gone far enough.  

Stage 2  Flowers and leaves brought out with darker washes.

Then I started bringing out the flowers and leaves with darker washes.  I used greens or the wall mix, sometimes wetting the paper first and dropping in various mixes in order to keep the illusion of things happening behind.  In the photo for stage 2 you can see that dropping in the first wash wet in wet has left interesting colours and tones among the leaves.  This helps with the illusion of light falling on the different elements in the painting.

Stage 3 More leaves brought out from the background wash with negative painting

I made sure the painting was dry before going in again between the leaves and flowers and bringing out more leaf shapes.  At the edges of the painting, I kept the shapes very vague by dropping in thick dark colour into a wet surface.  At the same time I was painting some of the leaf surfaces and also dropping colours into the stalks.  The next job was to start painting the background flowers.  More tomorrow.

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