Thursday, January 6, 2011

"Simple Cherries"

"Simple Cherries"
5 x 7 in
Oil on Canvas Panel
This cherry painting was so much fun to paint.  I really enjoyed playing with the simple background and trying to get a nice design out of it.  These dark cherries have a deep red imbedded in their skin, its beautiful to see how the reds jump out.  The skin being somewhat dark also receives a lot of reflected colors from it's surrounding.  It's fun to see how I can mesh all these colors together and make it look like a cherry.
I started with the usual dry brush approach using no mediums and just a bit of raw umber on the brush.  I use no mediums throughout the whole painting, there's enough linseed oil that comes in the tube i'm fine with just that.  After the drawing was established I started with the first two cherries on the left hand side of the painting.  I used ivory black, and cad. red light for the middle value stage.
I reinstated the darks and also enhanced some of the reds.  I start really thin in a scumble approach and after start to go thicker in areas that need it and also build up the opaqueness of the paints.  
I then apply the highlights which was cerulean blue, and titanium white.  I'm also stating the stem of the cherry with a bit of yellow ochre, raw umber and ivory black.  Then I start the third cherry in the same manner as I did with the previous two.  I scumble the beginning layers and slowly build up to the hue I'm trying to achieve.
Then I added the darker values of the cherry and also the middle and lighter values.  I'm constantly going back and forth till I get the look I'm going for.
I apply the same approach to the fourth cherry, at the same time i'm handling the cast shadows and their edges.  If you haven't noticed I left the background white, I did this before with another painting and really like the simplicity of it.  It's very interesting to play with the design of the overall picture when left with so much white space.  I hope you enjoyed this one and thanks for stopping by and viewing.


Angela said...

This is lovely. Sometimes simple compositions are better. Nice job! :)

Paul Coventry-Brown said...

Great paintings and I like the compositions too.
I found your alla prima demos very helpful as I am hopeless at it so I will give it another try :-)