Step-by-step: Speed up your painting process
1 A great way to cut down on options is with a limited palette. Try choosing a dominant hue and painting primarily by warming it (often with yellow) and cooling it (usually with blue). Once everything feels cohesive, try adding a touch of your main colour’s complement into the focal point to draw the viewer in. Here’s I’ve used some red to play off of the green. 2 The leaves in this illustration act as a frame that, while having a complex edge, doesn’t require much painting beyond their outline. Use elements that can be expressed entirely with their silhouette. That doesn’t mean that they won’t be taken any further, but they don’t have to be. A rhythm between simple and complex shapes can work wonders. 3 Now that you know what colours you want to use, put some subtle gradients into your main shapes. Few things in nature are lit evenly from top to bottom, so avoid large areas of flat colour (unless part of the design is nonrepresentative). Connecting the forms of shapes with similar value ranges will also generate a more cohesive design.