Toned underpainting

rose

acrylic and collage on w/c paper, 10 X 11″

The hand that holds the rose opens.

Can you smell that scent which captures the heart?

It often happens in my classes where free expression and an abundance of enthusiasm mixes with paint and inks applied in robust fashion – it all blends on the paper to make a single value “soup”.  For that reason it’s so important to know how to used opaque passages as well as transparent glazes to finish a piece.

This piece was the demo for a lesson I created to give us tools to combine beautiful neutrals with high chroma pigments.  Start with one primary color painted all over and let dry.  Here it’s red, obviously.  Then mix the complement with that color to get a lovely neutral.  Here it is blue-green.  Paint on a shape with the dark neutral, and before it is dry, spray with alcohol to get texture which reveals the under-color.

Mix the neutral with gesso for a lighter shape and paint that over.  Scrape out shapes while it is wet.  Paint a dark transparent glaze (lower left) to see how the under-color glows through.  I borrowed the lovely toned photograph of a rose from my husband for collage and subject matter.

The Monday Muse students did some fabulous pieces in the lesson, all very different and original.  At some point I will have the time to do a student slide show to share!

If you want to jump in and try a class, I have a space in the next Saturday workshop, March 7!  And I’m signing people up now for the next session of monthly Saturday workshops.  For more information visit my website.

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