Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Getting Ready for More

Temperature is dropping after a few weeks of intense heat. Fall seems to be right around the corner, and with it the changing leaves of trees and their beautiful shades of red, orange, and yellow. This is what I'm getting ready to see and paint in Central Park in the coming weeks.
I've been away from plein air painting for a couple of weeks, and seems longer. But now I'm getting ready to get back into it next week, and for this I needed to prime linen that I will need. I was painting on a ground tinted with burnt sienna, and although I did enjoy painting on that color I realized that the reason why some of my landscapes appear dark is because the burnt sienna doesn't bounce light back out as much as a lighter colored ground would.
I had to modify my ground and this time I made a mixture of lead white, bologna chalk, burnt umber, and a small hint of burnt sienna for warmth. The result was a beautiful warm gray tone very similar to the natural color of the linen. What I noticed after priming a few pieces of linen is that this gray ground had a pearl luster quality to it. I looked at my hand at one point and asked myself where is this silver coming from? This ground for some strange reason has a beautiful silvery sheen. I'm hopping this will reflect light coming through the layers of paint and make my new landscapes glow a little more. This would be of great use for those glowing fall tones I will be exploring.

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