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Author Topic: Base Value  (Read 1371 times)

patindaytona

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on: January 05, 2011, 11:31:40 PM
Can anyone help me with painting from "darks to lights"?    When you paint bushes,trees, it dark first of course. But then if you're painting something like a rock, you find a base color (mid-tone) first. I get confused alot with this. Don't know when to use a dark base, or a mid-tone and then adjust for shadow and lights with same base. For example, how would you approach the road in the photo...start with a dark base, like a tree, or a mid-tone base and darken and lighten where necessary?
« Last Edit: January 06, 2011, 12:51:36 AM by patindaytona »
The moment you find yourself mostly satisfied with a painting and think you'll "just quickly" do this or that, that's the moment to stop completely. Take the painting off your easel and put it aside for at least 24 hours, then reassess whether it really needs that tweak.


Kelley

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Reply #1 on: January 06, 2011, 04:02:41 AM
Did you paint that Pat?

I took the on-line course here called "How to Create the Perfect Painting".  I believe the class is still offered in which a lot of my questions were answered.  Nolan and Dennis did a wonderful video explaining how atmospheric particles (dust, smoke, mist, etc.) affect our vision of distant objects versus objects that are nearer.  The sky colour (red, orange, blue, yellow, etc.) also affects the hues of the distant hills.  Here in the valley where I live the mountains can be a hazy "light" red, purple, light blue, or not visible at all because of the haze.  The hills that are closer appear darker because there are less particles between us.  If you notice also that there is very little detail on far objects as if you had an f-stop of say f/4.5, f/8 or so (if I'm associating this correctly).  So I use lighter colours on far away hills and darker colors for foreground objects except for highlights.  Hope this helps.
Kelley


nolan

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Reply #2 on: January 06, 2011, 07:22:05 AM
great answer Kelley :clap: I'm impressed mate O0

In oils and acrylics I always start with the darkest color


patindaytona

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Reply #3 on: January 06, 2011, 05:26:33 PM
Nolan, on the Color Buster tutorial, on the Gazelle skin (another kind of animal), you first found the base tone the was MID, not starting with the darks. Wish their was a basic rule when to do which of the two.
The moment you find yourself mostly satisfied with a painting and think you'll "just quickly" do this or that, that's the moment to stop completely. Take the painting off your easel and put it aside for at least 24 hours, then reassess whether it really needs that tweak.


dennis

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Reply #4 on: January 06, 2011, 06:52:08 PM
There are actually no 'rules' as such in painting. The so called rules are there for beginners (and others) to be able to get started on the correct path. One has to start somewhere and where else but with one set of rules. Once you are well on the road then you are able to "bend" the rules to suit the style and mixtures and circumstances to suit what is comfortable with you.

As in arithmetic you have to first learn the tables fluently. Only after that can you start with algebra, geometry, calculus, and all the other branches of units.

Take for example portraiture. One artist will start immediately with brush and sketch the outlines and then fill in with the colors needed. One swears by one set of colors, while others say that theirs are the best.
Other artists have to grid out the portrait because they are not able to draw properly. Others paint in the old masters way of grisaille and glazing method.

What I am trying to point out here is the old saying, "All roads lead to Rome". Some go over the mountain, some have rivers to cross while some go by way of the plains. If you want to try all of them at the same time you will never get to Rome.

Choose one road and then stick to it. That way you arrive there faster, fresher and happier.

You are what you THINK about - Napoleon Hill


patindaytona

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Reply #5 on: January 06, 2011, 07:13:43 PM
Thanks oh wise one (just kidding). I like your words of wisdom. I save them because "words"are sometimes all we have.  In the color buster tutorial i have a clue as to when to use a mid-tone as the base and then use it for the shadows, or lighten it for the lights. Nolan said something about "when you have a narrow range of tonal values". It makes sense.   On the other hand, for trees, etc. They are not a narrow range and would just be better off by starting the base color as a DARK, then lightening further as needed. I'm working on a road. I say working, but when I paint something, it's DONE in 20 minutes, the fiddling for two weeks. So, I guess a road would use a mid-tone as the base and go from there. I know it's not a requirment though.
The moment you find yourself mostly satisfied with a painting and think you'll "just quickly" do this or that, that's the moment to stop completely. Take the painting off your easel and put it aside for at least 24 hours, then reassess whether it really needs that tweak.


dennis

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Reply #6 on: January 06, 2011, 07:27:45 PM
Just look at the subject at hand and then decide what to do - you have 2 choices, in other words:
Which one would be the best - starting dark and going lighter - or starting mid tone and then going lighter one way and going darker the other way?

It really does not matter which one you choose - just choose the one you are the most comfortable with.
You are what you THINK about - Napoleon Hill


nolan

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Reply #7 on: January 07, 2011, 07:41:04 PM
Pat, when mixing colors I always mix the mid tone color first as this is the color that is most pure (highest color intensity / chroma), and as you will see from my color mixing tutorial I then use my color mixing rules to mix the highlights and shadows. I just find that this gives me the least amount of work and all the colors stem from one base mix so I know they will all work harmoniously together on the painting.

Then when I paint, I paint from dark to light as normal.