Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Ferns in Overcast Light

These densely crowded fern fronds on an overcast day are a good motif for studying soft gradients of light and shadow in nature. 

The local color was fairly uniform on the frond surface. As a result, the changes in value were the result of:

1. Variations in the angle of the surface in relation to the sky
2. The degree to which they were overshadowed or occluded by fronds above them.

If you want to try this exercise, head outside on an overcast day and look for a similar grouping of leaves, ferns, or something else, such as laundry on the line. Analyze what causes the changes in tone, and paint the gradients with whatever technique you want to explore—such as in-brush, stipple, or transparent watercolor gradients.

I used watercolor and gouache (Lemon yellow, Sap green, Titanium white, Cobalt blue, Light red, Quinacridone violet, Permanent green pale over a variegated priming in casein), but you could do this exercise in acrylic, Acryla Gouache, casein, or oil.

1 comment:

lkligge said...

Another great edition of Color In Practice with useful exercises I'm looking forward to adding to my "laboratory journal."