Painting Demonstration 1
I start with a quick mop brush of cobalt blue and pthalo blue just skimming over the rough paper.
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Painting Demonstration 2
While the blue wash is still wet, I scribble in some azo yellow tinged with viridian. Letting the green bleed into the rocks, I paint them with quinacridone rust and cobalt violet.
Painting Demonstration 3
Still wet, I dash some deep greens in using my #4 rigger. Don't paint every branch. The trees are mostly shadows and highlights, without too much green or brown showing. Also, in a later step, I'm going to blur a lot of the edges, so don't worry if it's a little rigid to start.
Artist TipsDon't try to paint every branch - half of them aren't even showing up in the sun glare.
Painting Demonstration 4
Continuing the tree wash, you can definitely see where the underlying wash was still wet by the blooming trees. That's exactly what I want!
Crisper edges are focused at the center of interest.
I'm letting the trees blur on the edges and keeping the sharper edges where they're backlit by the sun.
I use a wax crayon to preserve some to the yellow green highlights in the trees.
Painting Demonstration 5
Continue the tree line down the hill, realizing there's not much detail backlit by the sun. I add a few strong blue darks, since I want the viewer's eyes drawn down the path.
Painting Demonstration 6
Now for strong darks!
There's a touch of ultramarine blue, but most of the dark shadows are cobalt blue and cobalt violet. I want even deep shadows to be a little hazy in the bright light.
Painting Demonstration 7
I used yellow ochre a lot during my Maine trip. It's a slightly opaque, not too granulating dull yellow, so it was perfect for the rough pinkish rocks. When you really look at the rocks, they look pink, but it's more little bits of iron, so quinacridone rust was perfect for that. The yellow ochre just pulled things together.
I think everyone has that feeling of walking into the light sometimes. You know the view will be beautiful, but it's hard to see the detail of each step along your path.
I hope this painting tutorial inspires you to enjoy the process of life and of painting. Every step we take is precious. Live fully in every moment, since the journey is the best part!
This painting is a reminder to enjoy your journey. Those shimmering steps along the way are beautiful too.