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Saturday, December 09, 2017

Three Steps to Finishing a Painting

'Winter's Palette'          11x14       pastel       ©Karen Margulis
available $175
It happens for every painting. I get to a point where I don't know what else to do. This is the time to stop! It doesn't mean you are finished but it does mean it is time to take a break and come back to the painting with fresh eyes.

When I am painting for a demo or for a video I am multi- tasking. I am painting and at the same time trying to explain what is going on inside my head. I get to the point where I need to step away and this is when the camera usually has to stop rolling. This is when I can slow down and really think about the steps I need to take to finish the painting.

I just posted the video demo for this painting on my Patreon page. The video stopped with the painting in the photo below. After we stopped filming and I took a break, I came back to the painting and refined three areas. Read on to see what I did to finish the painting.

The painting before the final marks

  •  Refine the Center of Interest or Most Important Area: I decided that the darker trees on the left were my focal area. I needed to refine this area while letting the other areas of the painting to have less information. I added more negative spaces in the tree trunks and more sky holes.
  • Create the Lead In to the painting and most important area. I needed to have a pathway for the viewer's eye to travel to my focal area. I enhanced the patterns of light and shadow on the snow and I added some detail to a few of the golden shrubs.
  • Add the Spices. I wanted to give the viewer a little treat when they arrived at the focal trees...a little eye candy! I chose red violet to paint some little accent marks on the tree trunks. 

See the 20 minute video demo on my Patreon page. $4 monthly subscription.

I did a quick color study to test my chosen palette

My reference photo Crested Butte, Colorado

1 comment:

robertsloan2art said...

Gorgeous painting, all in muted subtle colors. Great lesson.