The Process: Part Two

Hello again! I’ve been working on the piece I last showed you in The Process: Part One.  I’ve added some more layers of watercolor to the background, so it’s slightly darker and a bit more even than in the last photos.  I’ve also started the main drawing.

I’ve planned the size of this drawing particularly so that it will fit into the largest decent quality pre-cut mat I can find on DickBlick.  I’ve always had great service from this company: good selection of products, low prices, deals on large orders, and super-speedy delivery.  I’m planning on ordering a nice display mat for this piece, Dick Blick has a good one called Roadshow, that comes with a single or double white mat, foam core backing, and acetate envelope.  Check them out here!

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I started by picking out the largest, most complex part of the image.  I think this makes me more encouraged as the rest of the drawing seems to go faster after completing the hardest part.  The large fern-like seaweed is complete (I’ll touch it up at the end of the drawing process) and I’ve started the smaller leaf of the same species in the bottom corner.

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Here’s a comparison of how the finished version looks compared to the early stages.  I start with mapping out the darkest and lightest areas then move on to adding details.

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Below, I’ve included an image of all the colors I used to create the brownish fern seaweed, there are 21 total.  Since I have over one hundred individual colors, I started by picking the colors I thought I’d need, though someone with less selection would maybe spend time practicing blending to get the correct hues. Tuscan Red, Indigo Blue, Dark Green, and Black Cherry are my go to colors to make a nice chromatic black (black without using black). I still used a little bit of the actual black pencil  here, because I am using a lot of darks and needed the extra value.  Straight black flattens images out (less voluminous and realistic).  My images are somewhat surreal, lack a real environment and light source so I try to avoid any factors that may make the piece look more flat when possible.  Other than these shadow colors, I used mostly: Ginger Root, Bronze, Green Ochre, Moss Green, Burnt Ochre, Terra Cotta, and Dark Brown.

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One of my little distractions helpers, checking up on my progress.

I’ve just started on some of the hand and arm areas, but I’m having trouble with the seaweed with lots of leaves.  It was completely drawn from imagination, so I’m trying to figure out what colors I want it to be.  Hopefully in another week or two this piece will be finished.  Thanks for checking in!

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