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Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Three Tips for Painting the Green Stuff!

'Green Meadows'        8x10       pastel       ©Karen Margulis

 The Green Stuff is coming!   It can't come soon enough for some of us who have been buried all winter in the white stuff!  So in honor of Spring and St. Patrick's Day (I am half Irish) I thought I would share my top three tips for painting a landscape that has lots of green stuff.

I call anything that grows 'Green Stuff' even if it isn't always green.  Just to keep it simple and to remind myself that the tips don't just apply to painting trees. It includes trees, groups of trees, bushes, scrub and grasses. Landscapes often include many of these elements and I go about painting them in the same way.

click on photo to enlarge

'California Meadows'           8x10        pastel




These are some of the top things I think about when I paint the Green Stuff:

  • The further back you go in the landscape the less strokes you need. This reminds me to utilize the principles of aerial perspective...less detail, contrast, cooler and lighter.
  • Start with a lump of clay and carve your tree or bush using the background color. Add 'clay' to build volume by layering pastel to depict believable light (rather than lots of random leaves)
  • Orange is the Secret of Green and Violet is the Friend....my favorite tip for painting green from Richard McKinley. Make your greens more interesting with this tip.

This is the same scene as the painting at the top of the page
but I have utilized oranges, reds, and violets to make it more interesting.


You can see the step by step demo for this painting on my Patreon page. www.patreon.com/karenmargulis

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