Monday, 27 July 2015

A painting of Canna lilies.

My latest painting of Canna lilies. This was based on some photographs I took of canna lilies in a park in Seville in Spain, recently. They were lovely big flowers, slightly back lit with the bright sunshine there.

The finished painting 

I started by sketching the outline of the canna lilies and then blocking in the background with green paint.  I knew the background colour would change though!

Next I blocked in the main colours. I started with the darkest and lightest tones, then worked in a range of mid tones. It looks ok from a distance, but up close is still a bit messy at this stage! I also added some yellow and bright green swirls to the background.

My final painting has a dotty background which still has glimpses of the bright yellow/green through it. I have added a lot of surface detail to the flowers.
This shows the painting with a white mount. I have since framed it, and it will be on sale later in the year.

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Painting a red rose in acrylic. Step by step

Roses are wonderful flowers to paint. The way the petals overlap and catch the light is fascinating!  I find them quite challenging to capture the depth and solidity of the shape, as well as the delicate, almost transparent, effect of the petals against the light.

I have painted a red rose. 

Here is how I did this painting.

Firstly I made a sketch. This is done using pencil with broad strokes. It is a very rough drawing just to get the feel of the shapes. I have used a thin black pen on some of the edges too.

Next I did a tonal study using thin washes of black paint, followed by more pencil work to define the shapes. I have added a few swirls in the background to indicate how I want the background to look.

Now on to some paint! I am working on thick card, as this painting will go in a frame. I sketched out the main outline shape of the rose first. I have decided to do the background in a soft beige peach colour.

My next stage is to block in all the light and dark areas. I am using acrylic paint. I am using a mixture of different liquid acrylics, mainly Chromacolour, Procolour, Golden and AJ Vallejo. Most of this work is done with medium sized brushes sizes 4 and 6. Some of the smaller shapes are a size 2 brush.
The colours are built up in layers. I put the darkest tones on first, as this helps show the structure. I then add middle tones which gives the rose some form. I then add white highlights. Once I have the three basic tonal areas done, I mix up the "in between" colours and add these over the top.
This is a red rose, but I am using orange, pink, brown and purple as well. This is to break up the surface and make the painting more visually interesting. I would struggle to get enough contrast without a wide range of colours.

My usual painting style is to work in a "sort of" impressionistic way, with lots of small dabs of paint. My paintings are built up of many layers of paint, which give a textured look. I like to make the background an important and integral part of the painting too.

Here are some close up areas of my technique, as I develop this painting.

The final painting,  I have added grey, pale blue and white dots in the background to make swirls.  I have worked in many layers of additional paint dots and lines on top of my initial colours. I have used the paint in different directions, on the petals, to show the way the flower grows.

This will go in to a frame. I will update this post to show you that, when I have framed it. Also I will add in the information where it will be on sale later.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

A painting of four purple irises. Step by step.

Here is my latest iris painting!!

This is a very bright bold painting, A real splash of summer colour!

I started by drawing the outlines on to a canvas. I never draw in detail, as I do all the detail directly with the paint.

Next I blocked in the background colour and painted the stems. I used a basic level quality acrylic paint.

My next stage was to start working on all the various shades of purple in the iris flowers. I am now using better quality acrylic. Mainly Chromacolour with some AJ Vallejo acrylic gouache and some Golden liquid acrylic.  I have decided to add some leaves to fill up the space at the bottom, and balance the composition.

Next I start working some pattern in to the background. this is a series of dots in swirls. I use yellows, reds, pinks and oranges that compliment the main background colour. I do dots of different sizes, and layer them up.  I have also added some additional detail to the flowers and buds.

 Here is a close up to show a section of the painting.....not yet finished, as you can see.  I have really worked in to the background to show greater contrast.  I still need to complete the purles on the flowers with the final layers of detailing and texture.

The completed painting.

This painting was the one that I used as a demonstration at the Society of Floral Painters exhibition last month.  I promised several people who watched me painting that I would get it on here when completed. So here it is!!! 

The painting will be on sale later in the year, probably at the Windsor contemporary Art Fair.