Monday, March 14, 2016

Analogous Schmagalogous

Third project. Analogous Color Harmony (3 or 4 colors next to each other on the color wheel)
Sooo... this one was off to a rough start. We were told we couldn't do another portrait, and since I had already been working on a colored pencil drawing of a beautiful Maine Coon cat in an analogous color scheme, I figured I would try using the same reference for gouache. 
Bad idea.
I found out the hard way that I have trouble letting go. I struggled to look past the subtle details of the cat's face and simplify it into shapes.



I tried. I really did. I liked the colors for this subject; yellow, yellow green, green, and blue green, but breaking the reference into shapes was just making it look very unappealing to me. Perhaps I just jumped from pure yellow to such a rich yellow green too quickly, and would have gotten better results to capture the pattern of the fur without making it look too splotchy. Either way, this lesson was certainly hard learned, as it happens sometimes. 

Ugh

At this point, I decided it best to move on. Rather than get upset and frustrated when a piece doesn't work out, just carry the lessons from it, and move past it. Don't dwell on or get discouraged when you realize something just isn't working. From here, I figured I might as well just leap as far from my comfort zone as I could get. I have pretty much always done portraits of some sort, so I decided to challenge myself with something completely different.
Being a fan of Star Wars, and surrounded by my girlfriend's Pop! vinyl toys and wall hangings, I couldn't help but be inspired.



It also helps that X-Wings are simply awesome. haha

Don't forget to spritz!!!



So, with my composition laid out, I set out to do a 16 piece value scale that went from solid yellow, to orange, to red.  I tried to be more subtle with my value changes this time, even though I was still using so many colors.






This time, I made sure to start from the brightest value and work my way up the scale steadily.

I kept my value scale right in front of me as I went through layers of color
Working with subtle value changes from layer to layer, I found it was also easier going from light to dark when the layer underneath is already so similar. This allowed me to change values without having to pass the brush over an area more than once, even when working with diluted paint.
Now, one might think that you need black to get the best and boldest contrast. Here, it would have just changed the whole graphic pop vibe completely. This painting was fun to do, and it was good to get out of my element and really try something new.
Same as last time, trimmed final painting to an 8x8 square, then mounted it on Bristol board with my value scale. Now it is your turn. Try a subject you have never done before and run with it!






MATERIALS

Designer's gouache (any combination of analogous colors, 3 or 4 )
     Cyan Blue
     Ultramarine Blue
     Permanent Red
     Magenta
     Permanent Green (middle)
     Permanent Orange
     Permanent Yellow
     Violet
     White
     Jet Black
Straight edge ruler (at least 18" with cork backing)
Bristol board 11x14
Tracing paper 11x14
Pencil
Watercolor brushes (varying sizes)
Small spritz bottle (optional, though I find it helps the paint lay more smoothly and give you a bit more work time)
 Pallet knife
Pallet (disposable pad works great) 
Value scale

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