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Monday, 16 March 2015

Small Paintings Triptych Part 1 of 2

I love today's project, because it cost me next to nothing to make, since I worked solely on cut-off pieces of wood, that most other people would have discarded. See how nice it turned out?

When sawing some masonite boards to make albums in a previous blog, I had a thin strip of off-cut wood left over. I measured this and cut it into 5 squares. I had three of these squares left, after using the other two in a mosaic project, and these are what I used for this projects. My squares measured 6,5 x 6,5 cm each. However, the dimensions are determined by the size of your off-cuts. All of the pieces have already been painted with 2 layers of gesso. I paint 2 of the 3 squares in acrylic Buff Titanium. I don't want to have white edges showing, so I take great care in painting all around the sides as well.

The third square is painted in Raw Umber.

I wait till the paint is completely dry and then use masking tape to cover sections of the squares. To break the monotony, I avoid uniformity.

Uniformity isn't always a bad things and to make sure the three squares fit into a group, it is needed to add a uniform element. I decide to use the same contrast colour on all three squares, namely Raw Sienna. I paint this on the open strips, not minding if the paint covers the masking tape as well. Once the tape is removed the lines will be neat again.

Wait till the paint is dry before removing the tape. If you try this while the paint is still wet, it may easily leave smudge marks on your squares.

This is what it looks like once the tape is removed.

In part 2 of this blog, we are going to mount these squares on another piece of wood. I now lay them on there to see which direction I want the lines to follow that would be visually appealing. From the next step on it will be more difficult to turn them since the pictures will be established.

This is a really good time to treat the background wood to be painted later. Since my piece of discarded wood is very porous, I make sure to treat it with Universal Undercoat. I make sure to paint the sides as well. This will need to dry overnight. Clean your brush in turpentine or thinners when done.

I have decided to paint a single daffodil on each of the squares. You can of course do whatever appeals to you personally.

The daffodil seems an intricate flower to do, but I'll walk you through the steps and show you how easy it really is. Start by drawing the 'cup' of the flower. I used a trusted HB pencil.

Now add a crown of loops to the cup.

Add more loops to complete the oval at the top. Three curved lines with dots complete the inside of the flower's cup.

Add an almost heart-shaped leaf below the cup.

Add two more leaves to the sides of the first one, becoming progressively smaller as they recede to the back.

Two lines become a stem and an elongated leaf completes the drawing.

I repeat the same basic steps for each of the three drawings, making sure to vary the directions of the flower cups in the first step.

I use Azo Vermillion to paint one flower. This is like colouring, simply filling everything inside the line. I do try to paint in the directions of the lines.

The second flower is painted in Orange.

The last flower is done in Permanent Deep Yellow.

I use Light Green on the stems and leaves.

To create the illusion of depth in the flowers, I add smudges of colour to each. I use Orange on the yellow flower, Red on the Orange flower and Yellow on the Red flower. Or something like that. There is no hard and fast rule here.

I want to add dimension to the stems and leaves as well. Any darker shade of green will achieve this result.

I pick a favourite permanent marker to outline my painting with. My choice fell on Antique Gold. This step is optional. If you like your painting as is, don't outline it. It is a matter of personal choice.

At the end of the day, the project has progresses this far. I now need to wait for the background to dry before I can continue.

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