Today's class turned out to be really fun and instructive! We made three little sketch-paintings, the same size and on the same paper, one in grayscale, one from the original photograph and one that shifted the palette slightly. Above is a snapshot of the three 6x6" paintings I did in class today. They're on UART400, a paper I'm really enjoying.
Here's my original photograph and a grayscale copy of it.
I think it's a good idea to paint grayscale sketches from color photos. It can be instructive to compare a grayscale photo to your grayscale painting after you paint it. The skill of translating color to value is irreplaceable, I think, and derived from practice recording values the way you do it on location.
To paint the second one, I selected a palette of 10-20 sticks using my color wheel. That way I limited what I was using and didn't start to throw in the kitchen sink. It's primarily a blue-orange-green palette.
I also selected a palette for the third one, this time looking at the photo and the color wheel, and shifting all the colors. I like the adventurous quality of the color.
You can play with little color sketch plans like these to see what works and analyze the values and colors, learn how to make things harmonize differently, and challenge yourself to learn more about color relationships. I might use a combination of colors from both of these color pieces to make a third one, and then start to refine my color decisions before finally painting a version that is, say, 18x18" in size. I wouldn't pre-select the entire palette of colors when I do the larger piece, because by then I don't have to. I really know where I'm heading and can freely interpret the color as I paint. Oddly enough, planning results in freedom!
Here are a couple of paintings done by my talented students:
|Nancy's first one|
|Nancy's second one|
|Kris's two paintings|
Great job! Keep going, gang!