I did some work on both of the "Spring Breeze" paintings today, adding wet-into-wet overpaintings. On the first one, I finished on pedal so that I could refer to it regarding the value contrasts on all the other pedals. I love the rich red orange, but had a real hard time deciding the exact hue of the deep shadows. After some frustration, I decided to do an experiment, and opened the reference photo in photoshop. I used the pipette tool in photoshop to take sample in the shadow area of the flower -- Wowla! It's a dark reddish purple brown. I thought it could be a really good training -- look a a color in the context of all the surrounding colors, try to mix and match, then isolate the color to compare with the swatch you made to see how accurate your color perception is. Maybe I will try to spend 5-10 minutes everyday for this exercise, in order to sharpen my color sense...
Spring Breeze, Watercolor on Arches 140# Rough Paper , 7"h x 5"w, WIP 2
For the second one, I mainly worked on the background section by section, taking care to wet larger areas than the area I intend to cover, so that the edges would appear soft between background shapes. To keep the background muted yet colorful is the challenge here, and so far I'm happy with it.
Spring Breeze II, Watercolor on Arches 140# Rough Paper , 7"h x 5"w, WIP 3
Finally, I worked a bit more on the rose painting "Hide and Seek", mainly because it had a similar palette to the tulip paintings. For this one I just carefully worked on one pedal at a time, wetting each time before dropping in colors, and layer more after the last passage has dried. It is a very time consuming process, but allows accurate control for the shapes of any soft color passages. This is a painting with mainly saturated reds, oranges and mauves but very little true white, and I am trying to be very careful not to cover any areas that should be left white.
Hide and Seek, Watercolor on Fabriano Artistico 140# Cold Press Paper , 5"h x 7"w, WIP 4