City Rach: Compositions

I decided to attempt a few different compositions, one left, one right, one dead center, and one with an exaggerated perspective. Each one of these is as simple as I could make it, just a few flat washes. This helped me practice flat washes, and helped plan out the order I’ll need to use to paint this image when it’s time to paint.

Right
Left
Center
Perspective

Lessons Learned from this:

  1. Don’t paint the scene in the window with much pigment. It should be nearly white, just a hint of color.
  2. When the figure is on the left, it looks like the figure is spying.
  3. When the figure is on the right, it looks like the figure is just reflecting on the scene outside.
  4. When the figure is in the middle, it looks menacing, as if the figure were brooding over the scene outside.
  5. The floor needs to be a dark value.
  6. The left-hand wall should be larger than the right, and lighter in value.
  7. The right-hand wall should be darker.
  8. Under the window, and framing the window should be warmer tones.
  9. The negative space for the figure is of utmost importance.
  10. I should experiment with masking the window, and the negative spaces on the figure.

I think I’m approaching the point of diminishing returns right now regarding value studies and exercises. That, or I’m getting bored. So, next I’ll paint the full picture. We’ll see what happens.

I think the order if operations for painting this is going to have to be:

  1. Mask figure highlights
  2. Paint sky in a light, flat wash.
  3. Paint the window frame. Warm with a drop of cool in the upper left corners.
  4. Paint the wall cool up top, cool down the left side of the window, warmer under the window, warmest near the figure.
  5. Paint the right hand curtains in a medium value cool wash. Then darken value of the same color to paint at the top of the curtain, and paint the figure, blending the figure into the curtain.
  6. Dab a drop of dark red at the small of the back and let it do whatever it does.
  7. Paint the left-hand curtain with a med-dark value cool tone near the window, gradually increasing the value until the deepest value at the left edge of the painting. That value comes down and makes the floor as well.
  8. Lift highlights in the curtains with a clean synthetic brush.
  9. Paint a few tiny details (window locks, thin lines in the frame, shadows in the curtain) in dark-valued cool colors.

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