WIP - my first attempt with Mark's model.

Ok so I have got to the stage of 'cover the canvas' by laying in the colours. I hadn't balanced my lights properly so I am aware of the colour issues and my colour checking was a bit of a disaster. Tbh I think I should have started with something much smaller and put in more effort and time with the underdrawing.  However my main issue is the 'no blending' rule - don't you think this just looks clunky and awkward??

Any tips on how to fix or finish this would be much appreciated!! I am happy for honest feedback too - don't worry I won't take any criticism personally but look forward to getting some useful feedback!!!



  • SallyDy

    Excellent work so far.
    As a WIP it is hard to be definitive. Everyone could end up stating the bleeding obvious.
    If you also post a photo of the setup from the same viewpoint comments will be helpful.
    Overall composition and color balance is good.
    The fabric background could be more subtle, toned down a bit, less dominant. Looking more like pipefolds and less like tentacles.
    The blue ceramic ellipse is slightly elevated on the left. Shoulders are asymmetrical. As your focal point this needs to be spot on.
    The aluminium or s steel pitcher I assume is far from finished. Way too bright, saturated with highlight.
    Vegetation looks good.

    Hugely ambitious and complex piece to start with. The lower right corner would be sufficient.


  • I really admire you for not blending.  That's going to be a real asset in painting in the DMP style. How close have you been following the principles Mark Carder laid down?  Are you using a color checker?
  • That's a damned good first effort, @SallyDy. Not blending leaves a painting looking livelier, with texture and unmuddied colours. Yours is very lively. Good work. I look forward to your next. :)
  • Great start @SallyDy, keep up the good work
  • Ha ha @dencal you're right - they do look like tentacles! I will post the original tomorrow for comparison. I really struggled with the jug (pitcher) which is actually white. With my lighting not balanced I just found colour checking so difficult and found that I kept coming up with really dark greys, which I thought was just not going to look right. I've just now finished watching one of Mark's 'what's wrong with my picture clip' where he explains that the colour is usually just near the highlight but our brains filter this and fill the whole object in.  I'll go back to the easel and put in the greys and see how I go. 

    Thanks for taking the time to give me some feedback :) 
  • @Diana I have been trying to use it but I think bc my lights are not balanced everything just looked so dark - but maybe that's just me getting used to the shadow colours?? When I did the white strip test thing the two strips didn't match at all so that might be the basis of my issues. Also I get a lot of glare from my overhead light on the colour checker, another issue that needs fixing. Any tips????

    Thanks for the feedback :)

  • PaulBPaulB mod
    There is no "no blending" rule.  It is instead "No blending until the canvas is covered, then only blend where needed".

    The point is that blending is often done by us right at the start, when we don't even know how all the colors relate, and it's easier to judge at the end.
  • edited April 2019
    Blending is what I used to do in a panic when I was at a loss as to what to do next to make a failing painting work. It rarely, if ever, helps. It was like frantically rearranging the deck chairs on the Titaniic. 

     If we get the values right little blending is necessary and, as @PaulB said (and as Mark emphasies) it is best done latter when everything else is right. If our values are wrong blending won't help. It will just milk up the colours and turn the whole thing to mud and all immediacy and vibrancy  in the brushwork will be lost.  
    I guess that just as  a fantastic frame won't rescue a poorly executed painting, neither will blending.
    Your painting is all the better for not having been blended to death, @SallyDy:)
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