Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A Study with Grays

plein air 8"x10"

Last evening I did this plein air study and my aim was to practice using grays to create realistic color in my landscape.  I was first introduced to grays in a plein air workshop I took in 2010 with artist David Mayer.  It was a great experience.  Last year my interest in painting plein air was growing and I was lucky to be able to attend the workshop and learn the basics of painting in this style.  I had a desire to go as far in the opposite direction of my normal glazing technique to challenge myself and plein air was it!  David emphasizes the use of grays in plein air painting so I decided to try a plein air painting with plenty of those grays on my palette.  He recommends using four different grays, which I pre-mixed below-- 

basic neutral gray= terra rosa + yellow ochre + ultramarine blue+
                      white (top left)
red gray=       + cad red
blue gray=     + ultra blue
yellow gray= + cad yellow

Another tip I learned was using terra rosa and adding red to to create better and more varied greens.  I may have gone a little overboard in my study last night!  I just read another blog that talks about it here:
Tools for smuggling red