Monday, March 16, 2009

Watercolor Seashell Painting

This is the latest in my series of watercolor shells that I have done. I just loved the shapes of the shell and the different colors. I exaggerated the colors a little to create more of a glow. I used the same palette as with the Shell Trio painting which shows how versatile a limited pallet is and there are so many other possibilities using this combination of pigments that I have not even tried yet!

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Friday, February 27, 2009

Watercolor Demo at Art Focus Group

Watercolor Demo SeashellsI promised at the demo that I would post a bit of notes on my blog so people didn't have to wright everything down & try to watch at the same time. So, hopefully this will help!

The colors I used for this painting are Indian Red, Yellow Ochre & Cerulean Blue to create a purplish mix and a separate yellowish mix. These three colors combine together to create what is called a Desert Triad and has a ton of possibility's depending on the amount of pigments used and the amount of water used.
I just discovered this mix and I think it will take me a long time to use all the possibilities from these colors! These colors are also used separately in the painting along with Burnt Sienna, Burnt Umber, French Ultramarine & Sepia. I created a dark brown mix using Burnt Umber, Sepia and French Ultramarine and also used a mix of French Ultramarine and Burnt Umber to give a nice rich cool black. I then built up the layers with these colors slowing varying the ratios to give more variety & texture.

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Friday, February 20, 2009

New Seashell Painting - Reference Photos

This is a photo I took that I will be using as a reference for my next painting. I of course took many photos and during the 2nd half thought to put a sheet of paper behind to block out all my palettes but this is the photo I liked the best, oh well ;) I have painted a couple seashells so far and used richly textured backgrounds for the first two but want to try one with just a white background for this one for more contrast, will see how it turns out. I bought a bag full of shells over a year ago and am finally getting the chance to use them. The bag came with a good selection of about 5 different kinds of shells and the plant and some sponges of different shapes and colors. I think I will do a few paintings to explore all the different shapes & colors but using the same palette. The bag was scented when I bought it and my studio still smells so great, nice bonus :)

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Thursday, January 08, 2009

Watercolor Seashells - Completed Still Life

I think this is 'completed' but I will leave it for a bit to be sure. I darkened the upper half of the sand to add a bit of depth, I may darken it more but need to get a break from it to be sure.
I also lifted out some highlights to the shells to provide more contrast and shape. The darks inside the shells were touched up using burnt umber and burnt sienna.

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Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Watercolor Seashells - Update 4

Still more darks have been added using the same colors as previously used just in darker mixes. Still a ways to go!

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Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Watercolor Seashells - Update 3

Watercolor Demo Seashells Still Life The shells are really starting to take shape now and the shadows underneath have been painted in to allow me to better judge my dark and lights. I will likely do another layer for the shadows at least near the shells but this gives me a good idea of the darkest darks.

I used a mixture of Winsor Red & Winsor Green for the shadow which gives a really nice velvety dark. The pigments separate a bit which adds texture as well which is nice.

The shells have been painted using many layers of burnt sienna, indian red, french ultramarine blue and sepia in various combinations.

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Monday, January 05, 2009

Watercolor Seashells - Update 2


The background is much richer now and I am nearly happy with it. I will add a bit more variation to it once the shells are further developed. I used more french ultramarine, yellow ochre, indian red, burnt sienna and cerulean blue which are then also used to develop the shells.

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Saturday, January 03, 2009

Watercolor Seashells - Background Update

Still Life Watercolor Painting of Seashells
The background has been roughed in and let dry but I am not happy with it so will add more layers to get it darker. So far I have used cobalt blue, french ultramarine and burnt sienna. I like the texture though and the variations in color that is starting to occur. I used masking fluid around the shells & spattered some in the background so I did not need to worry about working around the edges quickly.

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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Watercolor Seashells


I spent the morning playing with some seashells and taking photos of them for a still life painting I am going to start soon. I have an awesome SLR camera that seems to be much smarter than me as I could not get it to focus on all 3 shells at once. I know there is a setting for this but where is it again... so rather than read the manual again I put two photos together.
I liked the angle a bit better of the back shell in the one photo where the focus was crisp on the back shell and softer on the first two shells. Then I grabbed the first two shells from another photo where the spiral was the focus point. I put them together and just loosely touched up the photo to make things a bit smoother.
I bought these shells last year when I was christmas shopping and have been trying to find the time to paint them, whew, just under a year! I was going to do a mix of different shell types but these ones just seemed to fall together so nicely, so maybe a mixture for next time.

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