Tuesday 16 December 2014

Playing With Shadows : Robin in Watercolour

 Christmas Watercolour
Placed on my easel using natural, daylight shadow for ideas on where to add darks.
Option 1. Light in opposite corners.

I have many tips which I share when teaching watercolour workshops interntionally. I love this one because it is so simple. I sometimes place half finished paintings on my easel and allow the natural daylight shadow to fall in different places. By placing each painting in different light positions.The shadows that fall across my work gives me an indication of where to add darks or further layers of colour. Often in ways that I had not considered at first. It is a great tip.

I can show what I mean by using the watercolour of a robin that I shared on my blog yesterday. I have enjoyed working on it gradually. By adding tiny sections and additions of colour to it daily I give myself something fun to look forward to each day, when I come into my studio. This morning I placed the painting on my easel to see where to work next. I have two " shadow" options for the surrounding area.

Option 1. I can work a layer of colour across the central section of this painting . Not quite as dark as the shadow is, but this would give the illusion of bright snow around my focal point. As in the image above.


Option 2. I could add a soft layer of colour in the two opposite corners and leave the central section brighter. As seen in the image below.

Christmas watercolour
Placed in daylight shadow on my easel to gain ideas on where to add colour
Option 2. Dark opposite corners.

There are so many wonderfully easy ways to improve our art without even picking up a brush. And at this time of year many of us miss painting due to so much happening whilst preparing for the Christmas season. So if you are one of the unlucky people who can't get near your watercolours at least have fun enjoying and learning from shadows. By the time you do get back to painting you will have learned so much and discovered many ideas on how to improve your compositions. Just from observing light!

Happy painting!



okielois said...

I vote for option 2.

Lorraine Rimmelin said...

Great idea and so simple. Thanks & Happy New Year!