Painting Azaleas in a Square Format
I don’t usually create paintings in a square format, but every once in a while I just come across a subject that is perfect for this type of composition.
For this painting I used a limited palette of: Royal Blue, Prussian Blue, Quinacridone Magenta, Quinacridone Gold, and Quinacridone Sienna.
After drawing in my flowers and leaves, I put frisket on the stamens. I then began painting in very pale washes of royal blue and royal blue mixed with the quinacridone magenta to make a violet on the petals. For the leaves, I used a mix of the prussian blue and quinacridone gold. Next, I began putting in my background colors of royal blue, prussian blue, and a green mixed from the prussian and quinacridone gold.
After this dried, I began creating some additional shapes in the background by adding some magenta over the blue in some areas, and adding gold over blue in other areas to form leaves. I also created leaf shapes in the background by using the negative painting technique. (For more on negative painting, check out my previous posts: Using the Negative Painting Approach, Fall Leaves and Acorns, and A Study in Negative Painting.) Then I deepend the values toward the centers of the petals.
Finally, I removed the frisket, and painted the stamens with a mix of quinacridone sienna and quinacridone gold.
I really love the contrast in values and the colors in this painting. It makes me happy and is one of my favorites.
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