Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Charles Reid and veggies

I go back and forth between two of Charles's books - Watercolor secrets and Painting what you want to see.  I had an aha moment reading about shadows. I am always struggling to make shadows as dark as possible. The results are never satisfactory. Charles says it is about values not about chroma.
The shadow has to be the correct value in regards with the rest of the painting. It does not have to be dark because there is a rule that says shadows are dark. There is also a mixing of colors between the object and the shadow (lost edges). So I decided to give this a try and I went looking for something to paint.
The content of the fridge provided the subject and here is the result.

I like it much better. I did the pencil sketch in one continuous line and I also tried to vary the shadows - warm vs cold.

The shadows below were darkened and cooled arbitrarily. The washes also looked weird so I decided to try again using watercolor paper this time (this sketch was done in the Canson multi-media sketchbookl multimedia is misleading in this case because it does not take wet media very well)
This pear was painted on a scrap of watercolor paper that already had some wash on it. 
I used guache on the background. the shadow is still very dark, there is a sharp edge between the pear and the shadow, but I find that colors blended better on the fruit. 

This whole shadow thing makes so much sense... Thank you, Mr Reid! I wish I could sign up for one of his workshops next year, but with the way things are at work I cannot make any commitment that has to do with spending money ...and at the same time I do not feel that my skills are good enough to justify attending that workshop. Maybe the year after ...