Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Peach Again

I intended to scan tonight's study a bit at a time but got lost in a phone conversation with an old friend. The plan would have been to drop in some cad yellow wet in wet in those white spots. In fact, it just might have looked fine stopping at that point. (I think that's what Judith alluded to in her yesterday's comment.) More to come! :-)

Shading still perplexes me. Perm mauve, pane's gray--neither satisfied. I liked rich perm aliziran crimson but only if I can keep the other colors in high key.


  1. Yep-that top sketch is what I had in mind, with the colours your phone call interrupted.Essence of peach, you might say.

  2. I want to give this another try tonight. Peach has been on my mind since last night and I have a few ideas...

  3. You say the shading still perplexes you but the shading on this peach looks solid enough to bite (especially round the stalk-juncture), while the confident perspective shows off the irregular shape of the fruit, and the bluer tint to the red down the cleft suggests the fuzz while the pale yellow suggests a peachy half-shine. It's gorgeous. Maybe the shading underneath is what you're puzzling over? ... Perhaps if you start including some background or surface which the peach is sitting on, the shading and shadows on the paper will start to make a different kind of sense in their coloured context.

  4. I suspect that you are right about placing the subject with a bit of cast shadow.

    I was pondering how the portion not receiving direct light could show shadow. That is, compared to the lighted portion. I am feeling that I am not differentiating my colors enough relative to those two areas. I hope this makes sense!

  5. I was again thinking about shadows late last night while reading from Faber Birren. He was talking about simulating transparent color overlays and how one cannot simply overly pigments and expect them to present--a subtractive (pigment) vs additive (light) kind of thing. It led me to think that shadow colors might best be portrayed not with washes over portions of color but by simply using a different color in the shadow area. All this is stirring about as I read on Impressionist painting guidance.

  6. Certainly when working with gouache you have to mix up an independent shadow colour rather than using washes or overlays. The gouache is entirely reflective, with no light passing through. The advantage of watercolour's transparency -- that you can subtractively mix on the page, as it were -- is probably no good for shadow because by the time the pigment is on dark enough to get the contrast, it's thick enough or dense enough to hide the colour it's supposed to be blending with. (That's if I've understood you correctly. I'm thinking this through as I go along -- I usually work with watercolour in such tiny dabs at a time that the eye is doing the mixing.)

    Mixing up new colours for the shadows would seem like a good option for watercolour too. Or layering on something like Neutral Tint more heavily, and then overlaying the 'background' colour to recolour the new shadow. Or of course the picky process of pointillism or miniature technique -- lots and lots of tiny strokes or dots so the original colour still shines through the gaps ...

    As always it's such a pleasure to be thinking newly about materials and techniques in the light of your ongoing illustrations.

    I think I'll go eat a peach myself now :-)

  7. I have had some positive results with a foundation of Neutral Tint (it does not willingly lift)and then applying washes for reflected color.

    Oh, there are so many watercolor books in my library... I must spend some time researching shading methods. I am sure I have read on this, but with the topic not strong on my radar.

    We are having fun! :-) Me, I had two peaches today! :-)