Dienstag, 4. November 2014

MARF Productions - Monthly Challenge (November)

New month, new topic :)
This months topic is:   
Environments/Concept Art/Landscape studies (traditional or digital)
   - at least five (Photo-)studies
   - one independent illustration

Here are some inspirational links:
traditional 1
traditional 2
traditional 3
traditional 4
traditional 5
digital 1
digital 2
digital 3
digital 4

I decided to work with oilpaint in this challenge. I wanted to experiment with thick brushstrokes and less clear figures.


I find it important to paint on a coloured canvas so no white spots lurk through the paint. That is why my first step always is to put a undercoat on the canvas. Therefor I often use a dark brown colour, because it does not grab too much attention. Also it is a middletone and allows you to work into light and dark areas.
Colourful underpaintings however can be very appealing, too. Keita Morimoto is a very good example of that. On deviantart I have seen some people use red underpaintings when they wanted to paint a mainly green picture. A underpainting in the complementary colour of your maincolour can help the colours to pop out more.
For the five studies I used both, brown and colourful underpaintings.
In this example I used yellow and black to create a very desaturated brown. Normally I work with actual brown paint, but I did not have my acrylics at hand and the shop did not have any brown colours. I used a very thick, flat and old brush to spread the paint. It is important to not use too much paint, so the texture of the canvas still is visible and the paint does not take too long too dry.

Step 2. 

As soon as the acrylic paint was dry, I started to work with the oilpaint. I used very cheap paint for the colour variety. I bought bigger and more expensive paint tubes of the colours I use more frequently (mainly white and different browns). As a thinner I used Diluent N from Schminke. Till now this is the medium I am most satisfied with. But working with thinner is not very healthy, so you should remenber to always work with a open window or, even better, outside. A while ago I also started to use rubber gloves, because the thinner dries out your skin and the constant washing after painting is not very good to your skin, either.
The brushes I used were very unexpensive, too. Most of them are not made of real hair. I would recommend not to use expensive brushes with oilcolours. The chemicals dry the brush out and destroy it. Often I can only use a brush 3-5 time with oilcolours until it is wasted.

Step 3.

I searched my vacation-folders for nice environmental pictures.
These are the references I used confronted with the finished studies.

I used a dark brownish underpainting. Then applied thin oilcolours with a medium-sized brush, defining the composition. I then used the palette knife to create interesting textures, more kontrast and nice saturated-looking colours.

Both following works were painted on a dark brown underpainting, too, the second one being a bit lighter and warmer. Both paintings are very small and were finished pretty fast, aproximately in 1-2 hours each. I used a medium-sized brush. At the beginning I used a lot of thinner and, when the composition was clear, worked with very thick and dry paint to create nice texure effects (this is where the canvas-texture comes in handy).

The process on this one was simillar to the both above, except the underpainting was a bright orange and the canvas is about three times as big.

This one was painted on a light blue underpainting. It has the same size as the one above. Painting-technique also simillar.

The final Illustration

This one took forever and gave me a rather hard time. The canvas is about Din A2 big, which is a very unusual size to me. At the beginning I tried to paint mainly with large brushes, creating a abstract look. That did not go very well, I changed the composition while working, and finally, after a day of frusration, I used the palette knife. I am still not completely happy with it, but the palette knive textures help a lot and now I feel it is ok to upload it. The light beige in the background is acutally white, but I had to take a picture in the night, only having a few lightsources in the room. I am going to take another picture in the daylight next weekend.

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