Saturday, May 28, 2011

Daily Paintworks Value Challenge

When I read about the Value Challenge on Daily Paintworks, I thought it was something I really needed to try.  I don't usually want to take the time to practice value studies before painting, so I was motivated to try.  Carol Marine explains the challenge here, and she suggested using only burnt umber and turpentine, using it to tone the painting surface a medium tone, then painting in the darks, and wiping out with turpentine or mineral spirits to get back the white of the board.   I've used thinned burnt umber to tone before, but I usually like to paint in the whites with white paint.  I still had my cherries out from the last two paintings, and decided to use them for the exercise.
This was the first time I tried wiping the paint away to get the white of the board back.  I found that it works out pretty good, and to get the sharper highlights in the cherries and bowl, I used a q-tip stick (with the cotton end broken off.)  My only trouble was trying to continue the next day after it had dried to lighten up the background a bit, it didn't work as well, but, now I know.
This was a very pleasant exercise to do, and I will definitely be putting more thought into value and composition in the future!
Thanks for stopping by, and thank you for your comments!  Enjoy your holiday weekend everyone!


  1. Very interesting, Debbie. Nicely done.

  2. This really works! I love the light striking the bowl and the highlights on the cherries. Not easy!

  3. Thank you Carol, and Virginia!

  4. I came to your blog after seeing this study on DPW. It's a beautiful piece, with a thoughtful atmosphere. Blogger doesn't allow me to follow your blog right now (been having this problem the whole week) but I surely will as soon as it is fixed. Cheers.


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