Artists & Illustrators

Tips on how to do colour note studies



You might nd it easier to rst copy some paintings but only allow yourself to say the painting in six brushstrok­es of di erent colours.

Look at your landscape in front of you and do the same when choosing what to paint.

Tone your panel with a very thin layer of Cadmium

Red Light.

Do the drawing in a neutral tone, perhaps Ultramarin­e Blue and a little red.

Block in the darks of the value pattern lightly with the same colours. Work lightly with your value patterns so that you feel comfortabl­e that it works both in terms of design and values. Now mix the paints on your palette to create the patterns. I would suggest spending time on your palette rather than on the canvas, creating nice buttery mounds of colour.

In these two landscape studies I have kept my colour palette really simple.

Firstly I toned my canvas very lightly with Cadmium Red, this allows a soft warmth to come through and balances well with the blues and greens we see in a landscape.

In this rst one I have created three colour mixes which are also three separate values. Each mix has Ultramarin­e Blue in it which helps keep the painting harmonised:

1 The sky and light of the water: Titanium White and Ultramarin­e Blue

2 The shadow pattern: Ultramarin­e Blue and Cadmium Red Light

3 The lights of the trees and re ection in the water: Ultramarin­e Blue and Cadmium Yellow Light

In the more developed painting, I have still kept my shadow colours as red and blue and my sky is simple, but I have graded the value in the sky and added a little yellow to soften. It is in the lights on the trees that I have varied the greens. I have still only used Ultramarin­e Blue but have used Cadmium Red Light and both Cadmium Yellow Light and Yellow Ochre. I have also used my round brush to create some more accents.

In this painting I have kept to the same compositio­n in the colour note study, and added extra accents and a little red buoy, which I pulled over from the right of the picture plane as it added a fun colour note.

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