Intro to Impressionist Oil Painting - Part 2 - Floral / Botanical | Rachael Broadwell | Skillshare

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Intro to Impressionist Oil Painting - Part 2 - Floral / Botanical

teacher avatar Rachael Broadwell, Fine Arts Teacher

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Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

10 Lessons (1h 29m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Setting Up a Floral Still Life

    • 3. Materials and Palette Set Up

    • 4. Sketching and Composition

    • 5. Toning and Blocking In Basic Forms

    • 6. Color Block In

    • 7. Petals

    • 8. Leaves

    • 9. Glass Vase

    • 10. Final Thoughts

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About This Class

In this course, we'll explore impressionist style painting through the subject of floral / botanical. I will demonstrate my process of simplifying the seemingly complex forms of organic subjects by painting a beautiful orchid! This course features full length demonstration videos in which I discuss exactly how I address challenges while keeping my strokes painterly and loose! 

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Rachael Broadwell

Fine Arts Teacher


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1. Introduction: Hello and welcome to this course on Impressionist painting. My name is Rachel, and in this course, we're going to examine Impressionist painting using the subject of floral or botanical. And we are going to be using this beautiful orchid as our model. So I hope that you will join me in this course. And I look forward to seeing your paintings in the discussion. 2. Setting Up a Floral Still Life: before we start painting, I want to talk just a little bit about how to set up a proper still life so you can see that we are viewing my orchid flowers from the side now. And the orchid flowers are just some planted flowers that I bought locally. And the drape is just a window panel that I bought at Walmart for about $5. It's brand new, so it has a lot more creases in it than I'd really like. But what I'll dio is when I'm painting, I'm just going Teoh use my imagination to basically omit those horizontal creases. I don't mind the vertical creases because that seems natural, but those horizontal creases or something I don't necessarily want in my painting and will actually be a little bit distracting. I think if I included um and then to prop up this background, I just stacked up two boxes because that's what I had handy. And then I have my lighting source here, and this is just a box lights. These are actually pretty inexpensive, although they do kind of take up a lot of space. But you could even just use a lamp or a window today is kind of a foggy, rainy grey day, so I'm not going to get a lot of light through my windows. But I'm going to turn off all the other lights in the room so that I have just a single source of light. And if you're new to painting botanicals, florals or other natural materials, you may want to start out with something fairly simple rather than a whole bouquet of complicated flowers. That way you can acclimating yourself, Teoh painting florals without feeling overwhelmed. 3. Materials and Palette Set Up: Now let's talk a little bit about materials and get our palates set up so you can see my still life in front of me. And my painting station is just right here. And this is how my camera will be positioned while a paint so that you can see both my painting in progress as well as my palette as I mix. And I'll have that light actually shining on the flowers once I get started. For now, I'm just kind of using it to light up my work station so I could get my palate set up for you. So right here I have just a piece of oil paper. This isn't a canvas, and it's just taped with masking tape onto a board, and I really like to buy oil paper. You can buy it very inexpensively, and you can actually get archival quality oil paper from companies such as Arches. And then right here I have my palate and you can see, even though it's cleaned off right now, it's very stained, and I do put my paints in the same order every time, my paints. So we're going to get started and I'll just go through the colors that I'm using. The first color I'm going to put on my palate is my titanium white. I'm not going to need a lot of white because most of my composition will be dark, thanks to my black background and even though it's very difficult to determine exactly how much pain you're going to use. Typically, I tried to air on the side of not putting enough paint on my palate because I can always add more paint. And sometimes it's no friend. Have paint left over on your palate when you're done, although you can save your paints by freezing it and what I usually dio, I can't actually fit my whole pallet into my freezer, and sometimes I'll do that if I know for sure that I'll be painting the next day. But otherwise I use little condiment cups with lids, and I scrape off the extra paints and put the paint into those condiments containers, and then I can put that in the freezer. Oh, I'm sorry this was a cadmium lemon color, so this is a very cool yellow, and it's very strong. I probably squeezed out maybe more than I'll actually need But this is a cool yellow because it does lean more toward that lemon or what we might think of as like a sunshine type of yellow. My next color is going to be a cadmium yellow medium. This is a warmer yellow, and we say that it's warmer because it's a little bit closer than the lemon color. This is more close to an orange, so if you think about the color spectrum, this would be a little bit more closer to the red side of the spectrum than this one would be. And that's why we call a warm yellow next. I have permanent rose, and this is going to be the only read that I use. I really like this red, especially for botanicals that have a lot of pink or magenta, and this is technically a cool red. And again, if you think about the color spectrum, this would lean a little bit closer to magenta or the violet side of the spectrum than a warm redwood and a warm redwood lean a little bit more again toward orange. I'm also going to only use one blue in this composition, and it's going to be ultra Marine blue, and this is a cool blue again because it leans more toward Violet. Whereas a warm blue such as a fellow blue on the spectrum, would be a little bit closer to the greens. I'm actually going to squeeze out a lot of this. I go through a lot of ultra Marine blow, and then my last color is going to be raw number. I don't need too much of this. I basically use raw number to mix with my ultra marine blue to get my darkest colors. I don't like to use black paints, and so the darkest value that I mix is going to be ultra marine, blue and raw number and using a really limited palette where you emphasize maybe the colors that you really want to pop out of your painting. Eso, for example, I'm going to have two different yellows because I really will be using those a lot in both the actual flowers and in the leaves. And I didn't really see any immediate use for a warm red, so I'm going to just stick with my magenta, and then there really won't be any place for Othello blue in this composition which is why I'm sticking to just ultra Marine blue. Next, I have my solvents here, and this is actually an orange oil. It's made by a company called Chelsea, and if you search online whether it's Amazon or an art store, you'll be able to find this. And it's really nice because, as opposed, Teoh paint thinner or odorless mineral spirits. This actually has a very pleasant scent and is completely nontoxic. It's a little bit more expensive than typical paint thinners and solvents, but I really think it's worth, especially if you want to paint a lot. I'm going to just show you that I have an array of brushes here. I doubt that I will actually use every brush. I'm going to start out with my largest brush, and as I moved through the painting, I will reach for smaller brushes as needed. It really doesn't matter what type of brushes that you have, but you do want to have a variety of sizes, and I do always recommend starting out with a brush. Let's even a little bit bigger than you think you might need and then moving smaller as you go. Okay. Next. I have two palette knives, and I predominantly use this one for actually mixing on my palette. Every once in a while, I will use this small one to actually add some impostor paint onto my painting. Not sure I'll do that in this composition, but I do like to have it handy just in case. And the last thing that I want to show you is this tube ringer. And I didn't use this while I was squeezing out my paints before. But this is a really great tool, and you can kind of see, I've used it on almost all of my tubes, and it really just helped you to get every little bit of pain out of your tubes. And you know how When you squeeze tubes, you get a lot stuck at the bottom and it just feels like you can't possibly squeeze it out . So what, you would dio and of course, you would take the lid off first. But you put the bottom of the tube into the ringer, you clamp it down and then you turn this so the tube will squeeze out the paints and you don't end up wasting any. So I think that this is a really good good tool to invest in its only $10 on Amazon, and I really recommend it for anyone who hits the thought of wasting paint. All right, so we've got our materials covered and our palates set up, so let's get down to painting. 4. Sketching and Composition: before I start painting, I want to do a quick sketch and are definitely advise always doing a sketch before you start painting. This helps you just to do a little bit of planning and thinking before you put paint to canvas and this composition. I think it's going to require some special considerations because the orchid has such a strong vertical shape. And even though my oil paper is also in the vertical or portrait orientation, the work, it is just a lot more vertical. And I want to make sure that I have a good composition that just isn't too stale or where there's so much negative space that things feel a little bit uncomfortable. And so one thing I'm going to do to try to make my composition a little bit more interesting is I'm not going to put my orchid right in the center of the composition, and by that I mean, I'm not going to put the vase right here that in the centre, I'm actually going Teoh. Let's say we are looking at this in vertical thirds. I want the long, vertical stem of my orchid Teoh run along this line, so there's going to put that in there, and then I'm going to very loosely sketch in the general shape of the orchid. I'm not gonna worry at all about individual petals. I'm really just looking at the composition and the form in a very general sense. I'll speed this up now because it's just going to be a very simple and crude sketch in ink . And what I'm doing here is I'm working very loosely again. I'm not worrying about any kind of details whatsoever. The point of doing a sketch for me is really about composition, planning and also seeing how all my values are going to work together, especially because I have such a stark difference between the black background and then the very vivid and bright pedals. I just want to make sure everything comes out looking interesting. And even though it's not balanced in a sense that it's symmetrical. I do just want to make sure that it's not an unpleasant composition, so this is a very important part of the process for me, even though it's mostly just scribbling. But while I'm scribbling, I'm just thinking about some of the different considerations that I'm going to keep in mind as I paint. For example, the leaves are not going to be nearly as light in value as the petals of the flower because there are some shadows that fall on the leaves. And I'm going to have a lot of lost edges in this painting, especially in the glass base. And I really like including lost edges, especially in still life. I think it just brings a lot more visual interest to the composition. 5. Toning and Blocking In Basic Forms: The first thing that I like to dio when I'm starting a painting is just to tone my surface . And basically what that means is using really any color, though I usually choose whatever red I have, but it just needs to be a color that is essentially a medium value. So I like to use read that a lot of people will use something like Burnt Sienna, or they'll mix red and yellow to make kind of an orange. And the reason for doing this is that it makes it a little bit easier to judge your values when you start putting colors into your composition. In this case, I'm really just doing it out of habit. I could just go ahead and start in on the painting because so much of the background is completely dark, and so I'll really be judging my values against that. And so for me, it's kind of a matter of habit. It's just something that I like to do. It helps me get into that mindset, and it also kind of eliminates that blank canvas anxiety that we sometimes feel when we're staring at a perfectly clean surface. So I used my palette knife. Teoh spread some of the color onto the surface, and then I dipped this brush into just a little bit of my orange oil solvents, and I'm using the brush just to scrub that color in. You really want to keep this layer of paint very, very thin so that it doesn't interact too much with the paint that you put on top. You don't even necessarily need Teoh. Do a super thorough job of covering your surface. It's really whatever you feel comfortable with. Some people like to just scrub on the most minimal amount just to get some color on there. And then I'm just going to wipe off that brush for now because I'll be using it again shortly. And then I'm just using a paper towel. Teoh, wipe off any excess liquid that is on the surface. You definitely don't want it to be too thick, as in having the paint me too thick. But then, in the process of pinning it down, if you're using a solvent to do that, you don't want to leave any excess solvents on your surface because that will make the surface very slick and the paint won't have anything to adhere to. And now I'm ready to start blocking in the very basic forms. So I'm mixing that my darkest value, which is going to be my ultra marine blue and my raw umber. And again, I like to use just a little bit of solvent. And all you have to do is get someone, your palette knife, work it into the paint just to thin it down a little bit. That just makes it a little bit easier. Teoh do a very quick and loose sketch, and then I'm just wiping my palette knife off arm night surface because I don't like to waste any paint When im sketching in the basic forms, I do like to use my long filbert. This is just a really nice kind of brush to do a very loose gesture sketch and again, I want to keep the stem of the orchid along that vertical third. Approximately and again, I'm not worrying about pedals. I'm not even worried about capturing all of the little curves and nuance. I just want the most basic forms, and at this stage it doesn't matter if it looks a little bit sloppier. If you make mistakes because soon enough, none of that will be visible. And the beauty of oil painting is that you do have a lot of flexibility in reworking, especially forms and shapes. A big part of this composition is this leaf that juts out to the right, and that provides just a little bit of a counterbalance to the orchids that are so strongly oriented toward the right or I'm sorry, the left and then these other waves are a really great compliment to because they're a little bit more vertical. And that's nice because we have that stem that's vertical, but it's almost invisible, so it's not going to be a really strong element in this painting. And those vertical leaves air going Teoh be a nice vertical element that complements the rest of the composition. No, I'm ready to start blocking in, and because my entire background is black, I get to just use that same mixture of ultra marine, blue and raw number. And again, I'm going to keep this layer not too thick, even though at this point it's going Teoh be 95% finished. They probably won't need to do much of anything to the background after I finish this block in. But I did need a little bit more pain, and I'm not gonna thin down this pile because there's no need. Teoh. I just like to have the paint from down a little bit when I'm doing that initial gesture sketch. So now I'm just going to start blocking in around. The figure in my primary goal here is just to get a lot of coverage. When you're doing a background that is very basic and solid, you may want to just add some interesting brushstrokes in there just to give it a little bit of subtle visual interest. And so you'll see me kind of playing around with different brush strokes as they work on this block in. But I did notice, and I've noticed over time that if I use a lot of horizontal strokes, I get a lot more glare where the light is hitting the paint so you'll see me doing some horizontal strokes in here and then going back over them with vertical strokes. Just because I don't necessarily want a lot of distracting glare in the background. And when I'm doing this block in, I am doing the painting. In a sense, it's a negative painting because I'm painting the negative space and what I dio any time that I do negative painting is I, like Teoh, align my bristles alongside the object or figure and then pull outward from there. And that helps me to maintain the figure and not lose any important edges. And then I don't have to worry about making a big, bold stroke and going right over my figure if I'm pulling toward the figure that I'm just using some very dry light strokes to indicate some of the areas within the figure that are going to be a little bit more in shadow. So over on the right side of the flowers and then that leaf that is over to the right as well, it's going to be just a little bit darker. And here you can start to see some of my horizontal strokes and how they kind of just catch the light in a way that I think is going to be distracting. Sometimes I don't mind that, but because this background is so dark, having a lot of glare hitting that dark space is going to actually take away from the stark darkness that I'm trying to achieve. And now I am kind of going into the figure a little bit where I see the background kind of creeping through the petals of the flower. And I'd rather overshoot the dark values than undershoot them, meaning, I don't want Teoh be painting my pedals and realize that I have too much space where I actually need to go back in with some of the dark because I do like to work from dark to light as I paint. And so I want to avoid needing to go back to my darker values a later point in the painting . So now I'm starting to work on that glass base, and I'm going to have a lot of lost edges in here because it's glass in the background is showing through most of that glass. I'm actually going Teoh achieve that glass effect by having a lot of edges that are just lost, an obscured into the dark background, and I think that that can maybe feel a little bit intimidating when you're starting out to actually paint over some of your edges. You might feel like you're not going, Teoh know what's going on or that the image is going to be confusing, but it actually creates a really nice visual effect. And now you can see that I've added just a lot more of my blue and then some red in here. And that's because I want to keep this very dark, but I don't want it to be completely flat. I want to add just some subtle variations in here, and so I'm going to achieve that by adding some strokes of this more vibrant dark color, which has a little bit more red in it. You know, that's difficult to see on camera, and it's meant to be very subtle and especially that space where there's just a lot of negative space and it's very dark. And since I have my light over on the left side of the orchid, there's a little bit more light hitting over there. So I added just the smallest amount of white, so I can capture just a very subtle essence of those vertical creases. And that might be something I revisit again in the painting. For now, this is very crude and no matter what the background basically is about 95% complete after I finish this phase. And I do just like to get as much of the dark values and as possible so that later in the painting, I don't have to jump back toward dark values. All right, well, this just about does it for this initial block in, and now we can move into our next block in 6. Color Block In: now we're going to spend the next couple of minutes working on a very basic color block in . So I still think of this mainly in terms of just laying in my values. But I'm also going to think about what the local color is that I'm trying to achieve. So again I work from dark to light. And so I'm looking at the values in my composition and trying to determine, even though I'm starting to work in color now, trying to determine which area is still going to be the next darkest in value. And I've determined that that is going to be the leaves. So I'm mixing up a very dark green and you can see when I am mixing. I'm just grabbing a little bit of paint and mixing it in and then kind of judging it. You don't want Teoh necessarily just mixing a whole bunch of colors and realize it's not quite what you're wanting, and then you have a lot of paint that goes to waste. So do you like to spend a little bit of time when I mix? Really, judging whether I've got the right value and then the right tone so and again. Value is the lightness or darkness of it. Tone is the warmth or coolness, and a lot of times the tone is going. Teoh tell you a lot about what colors you need to mix. So I used a lot of ultra marine blue because this is going to be Avery dark green and then not so much yellow. And I primarily have used just cadmium yellow medium in this mix so far. So this leaf off to the right is going to be my darkest leaf. But there are some shadow areas in the other leaves, and so I'm going to use this green kind of as a foundation that I can build on. And again, I am placing my bristles at the edge of the shape or form and then pulling inward. In that way I can control my strokes just a little bit more, - and also take no of how I hold my brush. I don't hold it like a pencil, really hold it with an open hand, and that helps me to work a little bit more loosely, and I rotate it so that I can change the direction of my strokes in a way that works well with the forms, and I'm also still using my largest brush, and I'll continue to use my largest brush throughout this step of the painting and some areas you might even feel like It's just too big, but I really encourage you to try to stick with your largest brush forest long as you possibly can, because that really helps us get some big, bold brushstrokes. And that's really important for Impressionist work. So you saw that I added more cadmium yellow to this mix, and you can see that that's really lightened up the value quite a bit in this leaf, even though I have not used any white. And I do try to lighten my values with color before I move on to using white, because using white is if you if you go to use white too soon in your composition, you're going to end up with values that seem washed out. So I really try again to just work from my darkest values to my lightest values and for as much as I can. I, like Teoh, use colors that have a lighter local value, meaning the natural level of lightness or darkness that's inherent to a pigment. So yellows, of course, have a lighter local value. Blues tend tohave a darker local value, and then reds tend to be somewhere in the middle in the stem. I don't want to be very prominent. It's going Teoh be a little bit obscured, so I'm just very lightly putting that in right now. I probably won't do a whole lot of work to the stem, and you want to just keep in mind that features of the painting that you want to draw more attention to, that's where you're going to spend most of your time, and so things that you don't want to necessarily showcase or draw a lot of attention to. You'll spend a little bit less time on those and leave those just a little bit looser and even, you know, unfinished. And now I have added some of my cadmium lemon yellow into my mix, and you can see that that yellow is just very, very bright and it has a very light local value, and so areas on the leaves where the light is hitting and I want to highlight more. I'm going. Teoh increasingly use more and more of that cadmium lemon yellow. And these leaves at this point are not going to be finished. This really is just a block in. And so I'm keeping the value fairly consistent and just kind of blocking in the general shapes. - Since I'm moving on to work on the actual flower portion of this painting, I want my brush to be actually as clean as possible. Usually as I work, I we'll just use the paper towel to wipe off excess paint. But for the flowers, they're really am going to try Teoh keep the magenta that I mix untainted. And so I'm actually I'm off to the side, just rinsing my brush o in my solvent so I can get a much of that green paint out as possible. - So now I'm going to mix up a magenta. So I'm mostly going to use my permanent rose and just a little bit of ultra Marine blue is gonna go a long ways, and you can see this is very dark and it's going to be too close in value to the background . And I do want to differentiate even my darkest pedals from the background. So you see, I'm just using the smallest amount of white to lighten that up a little bit more red. It's looking a bit too much like Violet right now, and I really want a dark magenta and again working from darker values to my lighter values . I'm going to be looking at the shadowy areas first in the pedals, so my brush, this is the same brush. I just cleaned it off his best I could. And with broad strokes, I'm just going to start blocking in the areas on the pedals that are in shadow. And I always tend Teoh want to air on the side of going overboard with my shadows because it's a lot easier to go over shadows with lighter values than it would be for me to go back in later and try to brought in my shadowed areas. So I'm even areas that are going to end up being a little bit lighter. I'm going ahead and putting those in my shadowed areas. One thing I really like to do when I paint, especially something like this, where there's a lot of color, a top at the top of the composition. Um, even though I'm not seeing this in life. I'm just taking some of that magenta and I'm adding a few strokes down below, and I think that that brings a lot of harmony and unity to the composition. That's very subtle. It's not going to be something that is obvious to the viewer, but I think that in a very nuanced way, it just adds a sense of unity and harmony. And now I'm going to move on and lighten this value up even more to block in the parts of the pedals that are in the light a little bit more. And I'm using yellow because the more white you add to a color, the more washed out it looks. And so it helps a lot to make your color just a little bit more complex. So even though this is still going to read as a pink or a light magenta, that little bit of yellow just adds a little bit of nuance and warmth to the color. And I really only just wiped off the brush at this point because that darker magenta is essentially the same color as the lighter magenta, so I don't need to worry too much about pollution if I had mixed any green into my magenta , as that would be very obvious. And typically your lighter values air going to overpower anything darker underneath it. So there's really no need when you're working within the same color group to worry too much about having a clean brush. So now I'm trying to find the contours of the pedals in a very general way, more so than I had done when I was doing the initial sketch and blocking. But again, this is very blocky and simple. I'm not even thinking about individual pedals or detail at all. I'm just looking at my still life and taking note of the larger areas where there's more light hitting. And since I have the light over to the left of my orchids, it's going to be the left side of the composition that's receiving more light. And if you look at the composition as a whole, that gives the composition a good sense of asymmetrical balance because we have a larger mass over on the right side of the composition and less mass on the left side of the composition. But since the pedals on the left are going to be receiving more light and will be more bright and vibrant. It will draw the eye more over there, and the composition will come together really nicely because even the highlights on the glass won't be receiving that much light. But the when we get to that point in the painting, where we're painting reflections on the glass, that will actually also provide another important piece of balance. Because right now you can see that the composition is very top heavy because that's where we have all of our brightest, most vibrant colors. So just adding little touches to the glass is going to help bring balance between the top and the bottom of the composition. So that's the color block in, and then we're ready to move on to a little bit more of the detail work. 7. Petals: now that I have my most basic colors blocked in Aiken, start doing a little bit of detail work, and I'm going to start with the pedals because the brush I'm going to use already has some of that pink and magenta on it. So it just makes more sense to continue on with the pedals than to have to clean off that brush so I can work on other parts of the painting to give the pedals more dimension and texture. I'm actually going Teoh achieve that just through brush strokes with various values of that magenta color. And again rather than just adding white to my permanent rose, I like to add just a little bit of yellow in there to give it some additional warmth and to make the color a little bit more complex and interesting so it doesn't look two washed out . So even though I'm still using my larger brush, you'll see that I primarily will put paint just on one corner of the brush, and I'll just paint with that corner, and that way I still get nice big brush strokes, but it's a little bit more controlled and what I'm looking for less than trying Teoh differentiate pedals from one another. I'm looking over at that work ID and trying to decide where the various values are, because these shifts in value are what is going to create the visual effects of pedals, and that really simplifies the process to, especially with a subject that might feel a little bit complex. I don't like to think about details so much because when I think of details, I think of using a very small brush and putting my nose up to the canvas and really being focused on perfection. So I really think of it as nuance more than detail. And so I don't feel any urge or obligation to explicitly define every single pedal on this flower. And if you look at a lot of Impressionist painters, that's exactly what they dio. They leave Ah lot to the imagination of the viewer. They don't define every detail of their subject, and I think that's why people are so drawn toward Impressionist paintings because we don't always like to have things spelled out explicitly for us. We like a little bit of mystery and intrigue. We like things to come together for us. in a way that isn't explicitly obvious, and you'll see that I am gradually shifting my mixes toward lighter values. And every time I do that, instead of adding more of my permanent rose, I usually just add a little bit more of my cadmium lemon just to add a little bit more warmth and dimension. Now I am moving to one of my smaller brushes, and I try to keep my white or values a little bit more sparse because a little bit goes a long way, and it's very easy to overdo it with these lighter values and that can actually have the opposite impact. But we want. It can kind of create that washed out look rather than showing us where the light is hitting most intensely. And so when it comes to your lighter values, generally speaking, less is more and I'm still just looking at my orchids looking for spots where the light is catching a little bit more and just using very general strokes. And my strokes are fairly abstract and they're also at this point they're getting thicker and loading up my brush with a lot more paint. And as you progress through a painting. You do want to keep your initial layers of paints a little bit thinner. But as you add more if you want Teoh, have a painting with some you know, brush, strokes and texture. You can certainly start adding on some thicker strokes. The only consideration with doing that is just if you find yourself a the end of the painting and you need Teoh, do some work on those areas where the pain is very thick. It will be very difficult because you will end up taking more paint off of your surface than you're adding because your brush, the bristles of your brush will catch that thick paints and pick it up rather than laying down more paint. So you just want to be a little bit mindful and give yourself a little bit of room to make adjustments at the very end. And now I'm using a little bit more of a vibrant magenta here in the shadows to define some of these edges. So even though this is a darker value than why I was using on the other flowers, it's going to allow me to define some of the areas that are a little bit more in shadow. And though my goal is always to work from my darker values to my lighter values, sometimes you do find yourself in a situation where maybe you went too far too fast with your lighter values. And so that's just another good example of leaving yourself a little bit of room to make adjustments. And as I work on this portion of the painting, I think that you'll really see that these forms come out not because I have drawn the Mao and I. You know, I'm following some well defined plan, but because the way that I layer on my values next to each other in a very abstract way those accumulate to create the effect of form So this color that's a little bit more orange , Um, this is for the centers of the flower. It's very subtle, very small, but the centers of the flower just a little bit orange and yellow, so I'm just putting some of that paint just on the corner of this thick brought. I'm sorry, this small brush in applying in a thick manner, but I know that I still want to go over these areas with just a little bit of yellow, too. So I definitely while it's fairly thick, I don't want it to be so thick that I can't put some yellow on top. So now I'm ready to use, um, yellow. And I want to pollute it with just a little bit of that orange, which is why I'm mixing it in. And I don't want that yellow to be too vibrant because it will distract too much from what my focal point is, which is those magenta petals from leaving that yellow just a little bit muddy? And I've used up all of my permanent rose, so I'm just gonna squeeze out a little bit more. I should have known. And I noticed just now that there is just a little bit of a warm tone at the base of one of those leaves, and it might look like it's, ah, bit too much at this point, But just remember, I really have not done much with the leaves beyond blocking them in. So I'm kind of counting this as a bit of a touch up on my block in in a muscle, adding some of that orange, too. The base where the orchid is planted in some soil. Just add a little bit of warmth down there, too. - And now I'm taking some of that orange and mixing it in with the green that I have. And I'm doing this because I want Teoh at a little bit of warmth. Teoh this stun, especially where the light is hitting the stem a little bit over on the left side. This helps just define it a little bit more and adds a little bit of dimension to it. So it's not just green. Now I'm going back into my magenta jys and you know, rules are made to be broken, so mixing up a little bit of a darker value because I don't think there's enough differentiating the flower's petals on the left side. From the right side, the right side things need to be a little bit darker because they're more in shadow. So I'm going back in with a darker magenta just to add a little bit of nuance on the right side of the pedals and also right around those centers. It's just a little bit darker, too, and when you see my hand in my brush, leave the screen. What I'm usually doing is just wiping some of the excess paint off of my brush onto a paper towel that is over on my right side. So what I'm mixing right now is going to be the lightest value that I use on the pedals, and you can see that it appears almost white. And that might have been a little bit of an overreach. What I'll dio is all kind of re evaluate all of my values of the end and see if there are any adjustments that need to be made. And if any do need to be made, you know I'll need to judge whether I could do that at this point or if the paint needs to dry a little bit. And I've moved on to my very smallest brush because this is such a light value. I want to use it very sparingly, and it's really just to define some of the edges that are getting the absolute most lights , which isn't going to be many edges and again highlights and really light values. Less is more with these, and they're really meant just to draw the eye a little bit in a subtle way and to differentiate some of those lighter values. - Now I'm kind of coming to the end of working on these pedals, and I'm just making a few little adjustments. I definitely don't want to pick out it too much or overthink it, so it's really important. Teoh. Even if there might be a few places where you really think you need some adjustments, you really sometimes have to make an effort to force yourself to stop working and give yourself some time just to stand back and evaluate or even move onto a different part of the painting. And then you can judge it a little bit more objectively as a whole. 8. Leaves: all right. And now I'm ready to move on to the leaves. So I'm just gonna clear some space on my palette. Just kind of moving things aside. I do try to reuse existing piles as much as possible. Just a personal thing, because I feel like no good mix should ever go to waste. Right now, I do want to focus on greens and just kind of looking at those basic colors that I blocked in earlier. I think I might need to actually go a little bit. Not only darker in value, but also cooler and tone. And so right now I'm just kind of experimenting with my mix to see what direction I need to take it. Essentially right now, when I'm mixing up is the same color that I used as my block in color for the most part. So that gives me kind of a good base to start mixing other colors That will make sense for this part of the painting. And I was just about to start painting and then I realized Oh, yeah, I need Teoh go a little bit darker, a little bit cooler. So what I'm gonna dio is I you see that I divided that pile in half, and I'm just adding a lot more of my ultra marine blue. And right now I'm just wiping my brush off. There's a lot of that magenta on it with a lot of white, and you see that I didn't add any white to this green mixture, so I don't want to pollute it by mixing it in with any of that light magenta in this leaf, especially over to the right that is being most blocked from the light, definitely needed Teoh be a little bit darker and value and cooler and tone. And then I want to add just a little bit of dimension to these other leaves. Us well, so those edges that are a little further away from the light are going to in shadow a bit more. And then as I look at my base, which is completely glass and the orchid is planted, but the container that its plans it in is also clear and so you can actually see some of the routes which I think is kind of a neat detail, and I want to make sure you capture that not going to spend a lot of time, of course, rendering that just as I'm not spending a lot of time rendering anything else. But I do want that to come through with my painting. So now that I've got some of those cooler tones in there, I can go ahead and start coming back in with more of that mid green kind of a middle value and a middle tone and that orange that I had added previously. It was a little bit too strong, but I definitely do want to maintain some of that warmth in that leave, so I don't want to completely cover it. But I do want to obscure it just a little bit. And this middle tone, middle value green will probably be one of the lighter values that I add. Teoh that leaf on the right because it's in shadow. So even the areas on that leave that are catching the light a bit and are being highlighted . Those highlights aren't going to be quiet as light as some of the other highlights that I'll add. Although there is one ridge on that leaf that's folded upwards and it is catching just a little bit more light, so I will be adding at least one lighter value to that leave. But I still want to make sure that my values makes sense in a real world kind of way. And so I definitely want my highlights on the shadow leave to be darker and value than some of the highlights that I should add to the leaves that are catching more light. So you see that I am adding a lot more of my cadmium lemon yellow to this mix because it will just brighten it up. And when I and mixing it, I am putting it on my palette knife and just sort of comparing it to the greens that are already down because I don't want it. Teoh be to close in value nor too much of a jump. So I just want Teoh have, ah, an easy way to compare it to what's already down to make sure that it's making sense so you can already see that this new mixture with the cadmium lemon yellow really adds a lot of vibrancy to these leaves and really makes them pop out a lot more. And in so doing, it just naturally pushes that leaf on the right even further into our perception of it being in shadow. And I definitely don't want to forget about the little bit of leaf that is behind the glass face. So I need to be mindful. Teoh add little strokes of green under the lip of the vase, and right now I just needed something kind of in the middle of those two piles. So I just mix them together a little bit because, as I said, all the highlights on this leaf to the right need to be just a little bit darker in value than anything that I put on those other two leaves. And then there is that edge of the leaf that is folded up just a little bit. So I'm just trying to add a very small sliver of highlights that I don't want to overdo it . And if it feels like that highway isn't quite doing it, I'll probably have to go back in with a little bit darker values and cooler tones on other parts of that leaf just to push it back a little bit more, and that will make that highlight stand out a little bit more. I'm adding a little bit of red to this mixture because I don't really want it to start looking yellow and so adding a little bit of red tones it down. It's a little bit less vibrant, but it's a bit more of a natural color, still very light in value. But it's more warm in tone now, and having some colors like this that are toned down really helps to push out some of the other colors that you're wanting. Teoh Hi, White In your painting. I don't want to forget about these roots down here moving this pile up here by the yellow just because it it feels a little bit too much like it's going to become polluted by the other piles. So I'm gonna do my mixing up here, comparing it what I've got. I don't want to add thick paint to the painting if it isn't going, Teoh serve its intended purpose. So I'm comparing before even put it down on the surface. And it does need to be lightened up just a bit because it seems like no matter how much yellow I was going to add to that, it just wasn't going to be different enough from what I'm comparing it to and again the lighter values that I'm adding, I really reserve those. I don't want Teoh apply them too much because that will wash out the painting and overwhelmed the other colors and values that I have going on. So the lighter, the value that I'm using, the more sparingly I use it. That's just kind of a general guideline and just a no on Impressionist painting. You want to resist the urge to do a lot of blending. I know that people really love oil paint because it's so easy to blend. But Impressionist painting, you really want Teoh stick Teoh, letting all the blend blending happen visually within the viewer. And so I tend Teoh, just use brushstrokes. Very, very light brush strokes. So when I'm bringing my brush to my surface, I'm really trying not to disturb my bristles too much. It's a very light touch that I use when I'm applying pains because I do not want my strokes Teoh blend in with one another and become soft. I really like to maintain my brush strokes. I think that that's just a little bit more interesting. Teoh, look at. And it's also an interesting process for me as an artist, because I really like seeing how all of these individual brushstrokes come together and create a singular visual impact. And again, just trying to remember to add greens into the roots and what I'll be working on next is going to be my face. 9. Glass Vase: and to finish up this painting, I'm going to do a little bit more work on the base and also the roots inside the vase. And I'm just going, Teoh, touch up some of these values looking at it right now, I definitely I'm going to need some darker values in here, So I'm just clearing some space on my palette so that I can create some new mixes. I kind of just combined all my greens, move them aside. Although I will be using them still a little bit more from right now, I want to get a really dark, earthy color. So I used some of my green, some of my burns number and then even a little bit of one of my magenta mixes. And I'm just going to come back in here and add some darker values, especially over on the right side of the vase. That's a little bit out of the way of the light, and I'm also kind of carving out some of those routes that are just a little bit more prominent. And then I also felt like I needed to lose even more of my edges, especially over on the right side of the glass vase, so I just mixed up as darker value as I possibly could. And I just went right over that little division separating the interior of the vase from the exterior and then even over on the left side. I wanted to lose. My edge is just a little bit dark in that up a bit, and now I'm mixing up, Um, a green. It's kind of a very earthy green, a grey a screen, and I'm going to try Teoh, dilute some of my colors, make them a little bit more toned down, especially within the glass. The glass face that I have is completely clear. There's no, um, color to it whatsoever, and it's very thin, but still to give the impression that is glass. I want the colors behind that glass to be just a little bit muted, and now this is just another earthy tone. It's a little bit lighter in value, again, very muted, not very vibrant at all. There's a lot of information that will visual information that I'm seeing within that vase , but with an Impressionist painting, I don't want to get too caught up in all of that visual information, so I'm trying to think about it. Very abstract Lee again, just a Z values and tones. So I'm looking at the lightness or darkness of a particular area, and then I'm trying to decide if it's more of, ah, warm tone or cool tone and just looking at my overall composition. There isn't any area that is particularly cool in tone, and so I am going to make an effort to add more cool tones into the base just to balance out my tones and having some cools and there will actually help to bring the magenta is out even more. When you're painting an object that is made of glass or is reflective, it's really important. Teoh really keep your highlights to a minimum. Keep your outlines to a minimum. So I used kind of, ah, medium neutral mixed Teoh. Start defining the glass vase a little bit more, but I definitely don't want to go to light too fast, so I'm just going to gradually start adding white into my existing mixture and you'll see that the more white that I have in my mix, the more sparingly I'm going to apply it, and this is also where you can really do a lot of redefining of you're shapes. So when I drew this in, I basically just drew in a very crude rectangle to represent where this glass base would be . It does have just a little bit of curvature to it, so I'm going to try to capture that. But it just goes to show you that even if you don't perfectly draw out and plan everything in your composition, there's a lot of flexibility for you to go back in and make adjustments. And everything that I do with this glass base is going to be small in terms of how much paint I apply. But you'll see that these small, um, highlights that I add are going to make a huge difference. So I'm coming back in with my smallest brush again, because again, this glasses very thin. So I want to make sure I apply highlights that represent what I'm actually seen when you're trying to create the illusion of an object that symmetrical. It's a good idea. Teoh work in a symmetrical fashion, so you'll see that as a work on those bottom curves of the boss. I am working immediately, then on the other side, and I'm making adjustments, so I'm continually judging those curves. I do want them to read as symmetrical as much as possible, so that often does take some adjusting. But even if I had drawn this out perfectly in the initial phases of this painting, I would have lost those edges anyway, and I would have need needed to do this. And so I've just gotten into the habit of working things like that out as I go now, I'm mixing another highlight, which is going to be almost completely white. You'll see that I didn't just add white into that entire pile, because when you get to values this light, it's going to be very difficult with a pile that still has a significant amount of pigment in it to really get it light enough toe where it's gonna make a difference. So I cut that pile in half, and then I added white, and that allows me to achieve more of a contrast and a gun, the lighter value that I'm using, the more sparingly that I'm going to use it. So I'm just looking for little spots where the light is reflecting off the glass and creating a little bit of a glare and up here on the slip, where my primary highlight is going to be going to have to use really, really thick paint because it's already quite thick in that area. So I'll have to revisit that. What I'll probably end up doing there is just using a little spot of pure titanium white. I don't usually do that even for my lightest highlights. But because the light is hitting that lip pretty evenly, I really need a way to distinguish that highlight. So there that was just a little bit of pure titanium white, and it just makes that little bit of a difference. Now I'm going back into my leaves just a little bit, doing a little bit of fiddling, just kind of moving some of that thick pain around. And I also want to add a little bit of neutral tones to those leaves because I think they're just a little too green, and when you have a natural object with green in it, it's very often going toe look artificial if you only use greens to paint it. So I'm using some of those neutral tones. Teoh tone down portions of those leaves to make them look just a little bit more natural. So have mixed this magenta very dark, just to add a little bit more vibrancy within the soil. And again, I really need just a little bit of blue down here just to balance out the overall tones of this composition. So I am using just a little bit of pure ultra marine blue, and I'm just adding spots of it. And this will also help me to Better to find some of the edges of the glass as well, adding a little bit more of that blue. Also into that leaf that's in the shadows and some of the shadowed portions of the other leaves. I really wanted to separate those two leaves on the left. They were running together a little bit toward the beginning of this painting and creating more of a mass that I really wanted them. Teoh. So dividing them up with a little bit of shadow and background helps to take away some of that visual mass, and at this point, I'm just fiddling a little bit. You see that I mixed a little bit more of my darkest magenta. I decided that I wanted to add, actually a little bit more mass to my pedals. And so I'm focusing more on the pedals that are in the shadow a little bit more, Which is why I am using a darker magenta. But I felt like they could use just a little bit more mass in the area. And I'm also going to use this dark magenta Teoh further. Just define some of the pedals and I had just a little bit of under painting showing underneath the base, so I quickly just mixed up more of that dark value. I got really close to the painting just so I wouldn't accidentally go over any of those edges because I was pretty happy with those, and now we have a complete painting. 10. Final Thoughts: I really encourage you, especially if you're new to painting. You might start feeling discouraged during the process of painting. And just take no of the fact that while I was painting my painting did not look good. Things don't really come together until the end, and so I would encourage you to try to overcome any kind of feelings of anxiety or feeling like you're not on the right track. Bring every painting that you start to to a complete point, and I think that you're always going to be surprised at how far it's come along. So I'm gonna show you my painting just a little bit closer up. I think it's a little hard to see details on my camera from far away. So I really enjoyed this process and I'm really looking forward to seeing your projects posted in the discussion. Thanks so much