|'Blue Skies Smiling' 30 x 40 oil on linen ©Karen Margulis|
When I get interested in something new I jump in with both feet. And so it was for learning to use oils. I had been doing my daily oils for a few weeks when I was asked if I would do a large painting of wildflowers....30x40 oil on linen canvas. Why not! I did some smaller studies and we agreed on the general composition and colors. I ordered the canvas and some bigger tunes of paint and got to work. I have been working on the painting for about a month slowly building up layers. The photo above shows the finished painting. Below I will share my steps.
|Step one...the block in|
I decided to stick with my limited palette of alizarin,cad yellow medium, ultramarine blue and white. I am comfortable with this palette and didn't want to experiment for this painting.( I did have to add a color at the end) I toned the canvas orange-yellow and then blocked in the flowers with a dark red orange paint thinned with Gamsol. I used a paper towel to wipe some paint off to reveal flowers. That was fun!
|Step two....blocking in the darks|
|Step three....putting in the sky and clouds|
For the next step I decided to put in the sky and clouds. I chose to leave both with a medium thin paint. I wanted the textures of the flowers to stand out against a smoother sky. I didn't want the texture of fluffy clouds to take away from the flowers. It took 3 thin layers to build up the sky and clouds to my satisfaction. I allowed te paint to dry in between layers.
|Almost finished....a few tweaks needed|
The tweak I needed to make was to warm up the red flower color. I needed to add Cad red light to get the right flower color. I also gave a light wash of some warm green to warm up some of the foliage as well.
Painting this large was awesome. I had so much fun painting larger than life and getting my whole body into it. I have a 36x36 canvas that will be next. I will try to document the progress as well.