Thursday, July 8, 2010

Calla Blues

This week's final exercise calls for laying down a very dark wash around the subject, preferably something light in value. Using a trace from an exercise in my Cornell drawing class, it wasn't long before the calla lilies were shaping up. Delicate veins, shadowed stems, and shading with neutral tint on the lilies.

Then came that powerful wash. Well, I think it is, but we are asked to go darker. I've botched up my stems with all that Payne's gray. So I'm a bit put out over this, but really, there should be no worries. It's only a few hours work and the purpose is to illustrate how a dark background can can make a subject jump out.

In my case, this background seemed to negate the light shading in the callas. So, I will lay in a heavy wash to really darken the background. Then I will work in more shading on the lilies and try to fix up my stems.

So even if I'm not thrilled with the results, it's proving to be a darned good exercise. Also, it has now given me the thought that I have some material that I can transfer for watercolor.

Another thing, I figure that if in the future I want to work with a dark background that I will start with dark paper and use colored pencil or gouache.

Oh, and lastly, after looking over the course example for this exercise, I see that the image was a close crop and not floating in a sea of wash like mine. A close crop of the callas would probably be just the ticket. No matter. No worries. I'll wrap this up tomorrow and send it on its way. After all, week 5 is afoot!

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