Wednesday, February 18, 2009

New Work in Progress Anticipating Spring in the Landscape

Welcome to the studio! This is what's on the easel right now. A 16x20 linen canvas that was toned with transparent red oxide and blocked in with a large brush.


I'm anticipating the return of spring with it's snow melt, cold sky, pale sunlight, dull muddy colors and the beginnings of tender green new growth on trees, underbrush and in the grass.

Yes, it's true spring really is on its way! Here's a peek into my garden.

Snowdrops coming up in the raised flowerbed.

Daylily sprouts pushing their way out of the thawing earth.

I've got mars black on my palette today to help create some of those mud season colors. It's great mixed with either yellow ochre or transparent yellow to make subdued greens and muddy yellow greens.

A Little bit about Mars Black:

Mars Black PBk 11 ASTM I Also called Iron Black, or Black Iron Oxide.Chemical type and description: Inorganic synthetic iron oxide. Closely related chemically to the coloring agents in the naturally occurring red and yellow earths, Mars Black is nevertheless recent in origin, being developed early in the 20th century. It is normally the only black available in acrylics ranges because Ivory Black is less successful in acrylic than oils, however oil painters could benefit from using this excellent pigment. It is the only major black pigment that is considered non-toxic, the only one that is a good drier, the only one safe to over paint because it is the only one that produces a hard fairly flexible oil paint, and is the only one that can be used in all media without reservation. It is dense and opaque with a warmish brown undertone.Toxicity:Not considered toxic. Do not breath dust. Media suitability: Linseed oil, Alkyd, Acrylic, Watercolor, Gouache, Tempera, Encaustic, Fresco, Pastels, Chalk.

Don't forget that neutralized colors can be very sophisticated and beautiful and are created by balancing the amount of complementary you mix into to your base color.

I'm going to spend some time studying the block-in before painting again tomorrow. I want to be very sure about which areas should remain loose and thin, with a lot of the block-in still showing and which areas would benefit from a build up of texture and paint.

Stay Tuned!

3 comments:

Pilgrim said...

As a new painter I used to shy away from landscapes because I dreaded trying to mix a believable green until I began mixing blacks and yellows instead of blues and greens. Now landscapes hold no terror!

Pilgrim said...

I enjoyed your video on mixing greens. I now understand why you did not acknowledge my comment yesterday.

Jan Blencowe said...

Hi Pilgrim,

Very sorry I didn't get to your comment yesterday, I spent the day with my daughter and then getting the video made, edited and up on the internet took a while.

I didn't mean to ignore you! I appreciate your support and the time you take to comment here it adds vakue to the site as a whole that I'm sure others appreciate too!