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"Blue Heron at Devil's Rapids" - Oil Sketching, Completed!

edited July 24 in Painting
                                                                       Line drawing, and then are values added, 3"x 4" on newsprint.


  • edited June 7
                                 Line drawing on scrap canvas, 3 1/2"x 4 1/2", for practise painting. Color comes next, beginning with my darkest darks and moving on from there with my pallet ready to go. thank you.
  • edited June 10
                                                                                       Just got the darkest darks in, 3 different color black, more to come. Thank you.
  • edited June 11
                                                                          I plan to get the rest of this covered today. if this works out well I would like to submit this for the landscape challenge. Thank you.
  • edited June 12
                                                         It took me little longer to mix colors today than expected, good thing. I expect to cover a lot more ground tomorrow, need to keep my palette open to do this right. Thank you.
  • edited June 14
    Sorry to take so long, life in the way, roofers next door on same level with each other, just within a few feet, ha,ha,ha. It's difficult at first but once settled in things get better, somewhat, now raining to prolong things, ha,ha,ha. The sketch is still wet as needed here but not for much longer at all, pallet still quite wet no worries here, so today is the day, ha,ha,ha! Later.
  • edited June 14
                                                                                  It's where I am at end of today (colors in this photo are somewhat off this time), taking short break and coming back to it this evening, and will pick it up again in the morning, ha,ha,ha.
  • edited June 16
                                            I only have the Blue Heron and the surrounding waters to complete. Most of the light in this is reflected light from the waters up into the bird. The brightest light is found in the waters, this in turn will brighten up the rest of this scene and complete this sketch. Thank you!
  • edited June 18
                                             Light in the waters to come into my next step on this, nicer photo today. Thank you.
  • Great little study @Forgiveness. Are you finding that even though it is small its still as time consuming as a larger canvass? 

  • edited June 18
    Searching and mixing the colors was hard work as much depends on color theory, brush strokes and color application must be deliberate and clear. By the time I come to render the final painting most of my problems and challenges will be resolved leaving me much more room for spontaneity and creativity along the way, ha,ha,ha. I may or may not have to compose another study such as this before getting to the final painting. It has been a very frustrating time in my surrounding environment, not very relaxed at all on the outside, fresh into Spring and Summer now, such a tough discipline to follow here, ha,ha,ha. Painting enjoyment is so important in feeling! Also under treatment for infection in my left eye, a week now, all is good, ha,ha,ha.
    Thank you.
  • Thank you for providing your step-by-step.  I want to do the same.  If I do, I'll follow your example.  I am amazed how you accomplish this with so many distractions and health concerns.  Your example is helping me to push forward.  :)
  • edited June 18
    Ha,ha,ha, thank you @Summer, I forgot to mention, also have roofers next door giving a 150 year old Canadian home a new one, working on same level as each other, within only but a few feet, NUTS!!! ha,ha,ha. I am also following the example of so many other artists (and variety of) also in such difficult situations, here it is, "just keep painting no matter what", just keep working it through with care and enjoyment, even if it is just 1 breath at a time. I am glad to have learned so much about keeping my paint fresh and paint storage in my time here, but I must be painting! ha,ha,ha.  
  • Very good advice.  One breath at a time--on some days.  I have DMP (Mark and Denis) to thank about keeping paint fresh and storage options as well.   :)  
  • edited June 19
                                                      Today I will concentrate on painting the Blue Heron in, I will be using a rigger brush for this. (this is very good photo today!) Thank you.
  • looking good so far.  Keep it going!
  • edited June 19
                                                                        I will be filling in the waters below in my next session (asap) and this may complete this piece. Thank you.
  • edited June 20
                                                                                                                     I just have slight adjustments to make, the heron should have more blue in it, and further adjustments at the foot of the waterfall and I believe this one is completed, 3 1/2" x 4 1/2" oil sketch. I believe I may have over extended myself in a sketch, much more than I first intended, and this is perfectly fine, my 1st time doing so and getting familiar and comfortable. Thank you.
  • Working on getting a decent photo to display my latest development on this, as this worked out real well, patience. 
  • edited June 21
                                                                                          This is a very good photo, but still not quite as nice as the original sketch that has more blue showing and luminescent! Adjustments are needed in some highlights in the rocks and in the green moss area, and call this one part completed. Thanks!
  • @Forgiveness I enjoy watching this one progres. Why have you decided to do a small painting sketch before you the actual painting ? I suppose that the little time that I have available to paint I like to get stuck in directly into the main painting, that’s why Alla prima appeals to me as opposed to painting in layers ?  Thanks 
  • edited June 22
    I have 2 issues left to deal with in this sketch, the head and neck of the bird are out of proportion, these are crucial for balance and good realism in the subject matter, even within the sketch stage, and the green moss area needs adjusting, I'm calling this step done afterward. When dry I will apply retouch varnish on it. @marieb, some of my clients appreciate some part of the artist's process enough to purchase, sometimes it helps in promotions and sales. "Support Living Artists!" Thank you.
  • edited June 24
    Thank you everyone, I am now planning the final painting on 30"x 40" canvas which is already stretched and stained, I can now begin the drawing process. I am procrastinating just a little because of budget restraints for large painting, I will purchase next weekend and begin mixing my colors for my palette. The largest brushes I have are #9 & #10 Filberts, #12 Flat but a little more like a wide filbert almost, this may do it for me? Thank you.
  • This will be fantastic on a 30X40. The bird is excellent.
  • edited June 24
    This will make it life size to show how I saw this scene that morning, in how it appeared to me from my perspective. The impact of the large image will make a difference to me. Thank you.
  • Excellent. You have done all the groundwork @Forgiveness and I think a large version will be spectacular.
  • edited June 27
    I have my brush selection issue resolved, already found in my studio (like new), 2" Flat, 2 1/4" Flat and 3" Flat, natural bristle. These will help me render the large rocks, the angles and texture in them, and the running waters, in keeping the movement alive, on such a large canvas. Looking forward to having fun on this one, Thank you.
  • Great subject, looking forward to seeing your progress paintings.  Thanks for posting all of your preliminary work, very instructive.
  • edited June 29
    Just for the record, I also updated the photo for the "Local Landscape Painting Challenge" post found here, thank you.
  • Yay Mark!  Very nice.
  • edited July 1
    I was successful in purchasing a new tube of Blue to see this to the end, as I was doubtful in my estimation/foresightedness especially when nearing the end of this large piece. I will be drawing up the canvas and begin mixing colors, store in snap caps and better organizing myself in the studio. I will also be working on Hardy Hibiscus flower. Thanks!
  • edited August 5
                                                                                                                   I have varnished this 3 1/2" X 4 1/2" sketch, and it works well in this size. It is slightly muted, indicating the haze in the air that was between my zoomed camera lens and the distance to the subject matter at 9:30 AM that morning. I don't want this effect for the large canvas (30" x 40"), it will not be seen so well across a 30' - 50' room while hanging with many other paintings and will not attract the viewers' attention, and miss the mark (which would be most unfortunate). The difference in clarity, presence and full richness in color will be made as I use French Ultramarine Blue rather than Cobalt Blue for my primary blue. Thank you.
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