You know – at first glance this looks pretty fabulous. But it isn’t. The stark contrast between the dark background and the white petals is doing most of the heavy lifting here. The detail just isn’t cutting it.
But that’s ok. This is a style I have never painted in before and fancied having a go at. I rapidly found I didn’t really know what I was doing. Have I learned anything? No, not really. It’ll take a few days before I can work out what needs to change.
As much as I like painting birds it’s been a bit of a relief to move onto something else for a while. I started out on this before I remembered how hard flowers are. Have a look
for my first attempts. Pretty gnarly huh?
as though they should be relatively easy compared to some things. They’re pretty forgiving if you get the drawing a bit wrong, they have well defined bright colors. and they sit still for hours on end without complaint. All of these things are true but they are of limited use when painting them. The things that make painting hard in general are crucial to get right when it comes to flowers. When do you use soft edges as opposed to hard edges? When do you emphasize a value change of light to dark and when do you blend things together? And the colors – boy you don’t realize how much a subtle change in color can affect the curve of a petal. Leaves are more forgiving – you can be pretty brutal with these. The flowers themselves – one slightly clumsy brush stroke and it’s all over.
Having said all that I’m pretty happy with this (I usually am for what it’s worth). I’ll pop him in a frame and see how he stands up after a few days.