Tuesday, June 16, 2009

To Lighten or Darken a Color

“The Last of the Spring Bloom ”

Bid On This Painting
This will take you over to Ebay

It is time to register for this year’s Fall Workshop in Mt Shasta. Space is limited, and information about the workshops is on our web site at http://www.thegrandview.com/. or call me at 800-511-1337 anytime.

Wow! We are just coming down from a great weekend workshop and are preparing for the next art workshop at The Grand View Ranch on October 16, 17, and 18, 2009. If you have not taken a painting workshop before, you will be amazed at the improvement in your work in just one weekend. To read information about the workshop, please go to www.thegrandview.com. I invite you to treat yourself to a weekend of education and artistic development that guarantees to inspire you and enhance your creative ability forever.

The Grand View Ranch is located on a hillside that “the locals” refer to as Dogwood Hill. The Ranch is home to hundreds of trees that have beautiful, white blossoms in the spring. Dogwood blossoms have always been my mother’s favorite flower, and she talked about visiting The Grand View Ranch this spring and seeing the splendid Dogwood bloom. This year we had the most amazing bloom ever. The blooms were the size of saucers and the entire hillside was bursting with bright, white blooms. Sadly, my mother past away this spring before making it back to see this breathtaking sight. Today, I gathered the last of the blooms and brought them back to my studio to paint them. I am dedicating this painting to her.

For oil painters, there are a number of ways to lighten or darken a color. One option to darken a color is to add a complementary color. The complement of a color is the color that is directly opposite that color on the color wheel - the complement of yellow is purple, the complement of red is green, and the complementary color of blue is orange. Either color can be the focal color that has the complementary color added to it. For example, when red is added in small amounts to green (the focal color), the green will become cooler and darker, and when green is added in small amounts to red, the red will become cooler and darker.

I seldom recommend using black from a tube to darken a painting. Instead, I suggest making black by using dark brown and blue. I used Asphaltum and Cobalt Blue for the dark background in today’s painting, “The Last of the Spring Bloom.” Mixing Thalo-Green with Alizarin Crimson is another way to make a very dark black. I added white to lighten the colors that I used to paint the Dogwood flowers. When painting something white, especially highlights, I never use white out of the tube. White, by itself, is not a good highlight color because it has a cool tone, and highlights because they originate from the sun or light, are essentially warm in tone. My secret to making the highlights in my paintings glow is to add a tiny amount of yellow or red to the white so that the natural effect of light reflects brilliantly as it does on the Dogwood blossoms.
If you are interested in experiencing a breakthrough weekend that will take your art to the next level, visit our new website at http://www.thegrandview.com/,

You can download my FREE BOOK where I share “Everything I know About Painting.” At my websiteI hope that we can build a community of artists that can share information with each other.

If you know of any artists that might appreciate being included, let them know about this blog.
I hope to offer more painting tips as this conversation continues. If you have questions that you would like me to answer, please don’t hesitate to email me anytime.

I welcome your feedback Baumann@yahoo.com


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