Self Portrait by Edgar Degas 1834 - 1917
Painting a Tonal Pattern
After this studio lesson, my husband Reg brought coffee out to my student and me in the studio garden. I did a light-and-shade block-in of a rose as a demonstration painting, and we browsed flower painting art books.
Continuing the lessons in Light and Dark, Tonal Values.
Work dark to light, as your canvas is light and you seek to work efficiently.
Choose a not too complex subject in a two dimensional form and you are effectively copying this across, sight size to another two-dimensional form, your canvas.
Painting the Warby Hut
I chose to work in a small scale of A4 size on a 300 gram textured 100% cotton acid free watercolour paper using flow formula acrylic paint to create a simple copy from the photograph - view side image. The paint brands I used were Maimari a very high quality Italian brand. I also have a few other brands of acrylic paint in my kit, chosen for convenience, as they are commonly available.
The painting was completed in one setting, impressionist style, as a teaching demonstration, using Maimari Puro oils on 8" x 10" canvas panel board and only three tubes of colour.
I have not signed this work as yet, as I like to spend some time looking at it before the final brush strokes go in.
I am an author as well as a painter. You can find my stories of crime, betrayal, resilience, love and Australia at Ryn Shell
Painting by the Billabong
Vitamin D top-up: Soak up the winter sunshine for thirty minutes a day' or 5 to 10 minutes of early morning sunshine in summer.It is mid-winter in my Goulburn Valley retreat, and I'm striving to get out of doors, with bare arms, into the winter sunshine each day to do a little gardening.
I'm setting up my en plein air painting kit. In springtime, I'll not even need to leave home as the canola crop is growing well and my roses and perennials will be spectacular this spring. As per my Fitness beyond Seventy post, I'm less active these days. Just the same, I've not given up any of the creative activities I love, I've just modified them to suit my current level of fitness. Getting enough Vitamin D does not get any less important as we age. Whether it is painting out of doors, gardening, or walking, I strive to get my natural sunshine Vitamin D boost every chance I can.
Cleaning oil paint brushes
Canola oil, baby oil and neatsfoot oil are all suitable first rinse options for oil painting brushes.
Make certain you remove all traces ef these oils before painting.
Second clean could be with a mild soap and water, taking care to dry to brush bristles in shape, or use a turpentine out of doors with extreme care.
I use both methods at different times. I always set my brush hairs in place if washing them in soap and water.
If using turpentine, I choose citrus turpentine.
This small artwork took ten hours of work, over several evenings, along with decades of experience to complete. Remember that if your first efforts are not near this standard, don’t be discouraged; just continue to practice and learn. We all improve if we give ourselves time and work at it.
I paint the parts of the rose that are the greatest contrast to the white watercolour paper surface, meaning that I paint all the dark parts of the painting first. Once this is done, I paint all the medium-dark sections.
Then I paint the middle tones, and then the medium-light tones. The final stage of the block-in is to paint the lightest parts of the rose. I leave small amounts of the white paper showing—as is done when you paint transparent watercolour—to represent the highlights on the rose.
Making alterations to a completed oil painting by Ryn Shell
Colour harmony is important for the pure enjoyment of the artwork. The colours of sun and sky, for example, and classical, harmonious, joyful hues are evocative of late spring, Wordsworth’s poem “Daffodils,” French décor and gayety.
This is one of my favourite small oil paintings. Note how the green is more of a yellow-green than a true hue of green. The yellow warms toward a yellow-orange in parts, and this becomes a close colour harmony of yellow-orange, to yellow, to yellow-green. The true opposite to those hues (colour) would be violet.
I chose a blue. This wasn’t a perfect split-opposite colour harmony, but it is one I like. As it’s not a perfect colour harmony, it works best that I kept the blue slightly subdued at a mid-chroma or colour intensity rather than at a full, high-chroma, intense blue, as that would have been visually jarring.
Nature is a good teacher of colour harmony. Rarely do you see colours clashing in nature.
By subduing the blue with white to form pastel tones and with its near opposite, yellow-orange, I formed subtle greens and greys, depending on the balance of blue to yellow-orange and white in the mixture. I do not use black in my flower paintings.
In my Dreaming Billabong novels (written under the pen name derivative of Kathryn Shell—Ryn Shell), I have Lesley Fife’s bedroom in the Fife homestead decorated in the colours of blue and yellow. Lesley’s daughter Emily loved waking up to this cheerful colour scheme.
Maybe I’m the proverbial cockeyed optimist, but I defy anyone to be perpetually miserable when surrounded by clear blue sky and golden yellow flowers, unless they happen to be allergic to the blooms.
I used one of the best stretched Belgian-linen canvases and professional artist, Maimeri Puro oil paints to create this work. The back of the artwork will show the quality of the canvas. Look for close weave in the fabric.
OIL PAINTING or SOFT PASTELS