Friday, March 4, 2011

choosing colors, preparing the palette

Roger asked a couple of good questions yesterday. I will answer them in more detail here. As you know a painting begins with many studies to determine the best way to present your idea. Which format will
allow the idea to grow? It is probably your biggest question once you know your concept.

Next I make a grisaille, which is essentially a value painting. If that doesn't work the painting never will. I still struggle with how much needs to go into the grisaille.

Next color. For me color is not an accident. In pastel, I preselect my colors and  in oil, I premix. Whether pastel or oil I almost always add to the plan later...whatever the painting tells me to do.
 I chose the colors for this painting, however my palette may change for the next painting, but basically I always have a red, yellow and blue. This one will be built from 5 colors: mostly transparent. hansa yellow. yellow ochre, cadmium red light, ultramarine blue and last quinacridone magenta, plus white.

Quinacridone Magenta is tricky, so I tried all 3 versions that I own and decided on Daniel Smith's version. I mixed the possibilities, keeping in mind the grays will be much richer if I make them by glazing layers rather than mixing. The major work is next done on the palette.  The painting is now in a very awkward stage. Sometimes I just want to jump to it and paint alla prima, but I really love the jewel like depth that glazing can offer. Patience. I am always learning patience.

PS One last thing- I always prefer wood board. So much more is possible and I love starting smooth and adding texture .


5 comments:

Carol Lee Beckx said...

I do admire your discipline in the process of your paintings - trhe planning of the format, then grisalle and then the careful selection of colours. Maybe I should try your way - I tend to work in a much more intuitive way that often creates many problems.

Double "D" said...

You must be getting better, you seem to be
writing a book and publishing demonstrations.
Don't go too fast though, pay backs are ... you know what!

It 's a good thing you don't see my process. You show yours in detail, mine is only in my head and that's unfortunate because I can't remember where it is.

Take care my friend,
pb

Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

Not surprising to see how thorough and thoughtful your preparation is! I didn't realize that you pre-selected your pastels! Do you have "standard" selections or is it more serendipity each time?

Brian McGurgan said...

It's great to read more about your process and to see your palette, Loriann. I look forward to seeing how this painting develops!

loriann said...

Hi Carol!
Thank you for your comment about being disciplined. I do try. My plein air paintings more intuitive and responding the the moment. Yet for my studio paintings I aim to create a special mood and so much of that depends on planning rather than the serendipity of my outdoor work. I don't know maybe that will change for me one day.

Heehee PB, Yes I have turned a corner in the last couple of days, so finally I am trying to go off all the pain meds! I can't wait for them to be gone!
As for my process, I decide to show it since I have received many questions. Studio work is so much slower so posting work someone would like to see takes a lot longer. It would be interesting to see your process. I know it is in your head...but maybe you could share a little. One of the most fascinating things (to me) is other artist's processes. What do you think?

Hi Kvan,
Yes I try to pre-select pastels. But I always add one or two after, that is whatever the painting demands. I have no standard selections for oil or pastels, it is just what feels right. How about you?

Hi Brian,
Thank you. We will see what happens! It's at a very exciting point right now. I can't wait till it dries. The walnut alkyd takes a little longer.