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At Dawn's Light

Voy Kay 06 Oct 2020

I should've given this my own chosen title: "Here is how to paint a dragon". It would be easier and faster to sum up what's wrong with it then what's right. All went well until I needed to mix TW with liquid clear!? From then on, all foliage and bushes went wrong. I will let this 'dragon' dry till end November and then partially repaint (if possible), bushes and trees.
Because of the upset with that crazy mix, I failed my birch trees which I am normally very good at. Pity, cause I had my heart set on this creation!
Canvas used was a high quality 16"x20". This one requires quite some painting space on the palet.

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Can't see no dragons Voy :) a good painting. It sounds that liquid clear is a true disaster to handle. But you did good here! may be when it is dry you can enhance shadows on the tree against the sun, not sure which way to move though. The evergreen need to get his white fluffy winter jacket, I think, for Christmas holidays. I think it stands there and envy all the trees around.

But if very seriously. Blending in the sky is amazing! the way how it reflects in the water is great too. I like that it has somehow this foggy effect above the water layer, like may be there is a hot spring not far somewhere. The calm greys add very wintery feel. It feels like minus 20 C there.

Voy Kay Conqueror of Challenges

Thanks for your great comment Sunnyday, I feel better already!

Also the family here thinks the evergreen needs a highlight (Bob did not give that) and yes, I will change/alter that soon.
Most concerned I was with the foliage in the birches and specially the bushes alongside the path. I scraped in a lot of branches there to give it some volume and that helped a little.

I know that feeling Voy, experienced it a lot lately. I'm not confident making alterations later on so I'd be tempted to scrape off while still wet. I was working in poor light and didn't notice that my path disappeared. I just decided to leave it "mysterious looking". I'm interested to see how your alterations turn out. At Dawn's Light is one of my favourites. Great blending by the way.

I think bushes along the path look very wintery too. You preserved darks there. As you said after it is dry you can play with adding some extra highlight, but not just with white but white with a bit of orange and add to the right of the path to show a bit of light still reaching there. But if it does not work just use linseed oil older brush and a piece of towel to erase new fresh layer. It will not damage the dried layers.

@TheLandscapePainter There are benefits in both methods: scrape or alter on dry. Dont worry just go with what works for you the best. In fact I feel fearless that I screw up a painting when altering already dried one, that never happened with when I scrape off wet painting. However I need to note that when i scrape off sometimes the result is unexpected and occasionally really nice. I think it is just different people and preferences. Don't beat yourself up for the way you like doing it. There is no wrong way. It is art!

Voy Kay Conqueror of Challenges

Dear TLP, thank you for that lovely comment!
Indeed, blending is something I master well so I'm confident with those type of skies, and water reflections.
Poor health kept me from painting for a (long) while and guess I need to learn 'walking' again before 'running'. I intend to dry everything a little and then see what I can do with some highlights (Sunnylady gave a very good tip!).
And indeed, had a look at your creation just now and the path is hardly visible. I altered mine with some VDbrown so that it would be a little visible at least.
And I will never question your choice of favourites, 'At dawn's light' is indeed a star amongst Bob Ross creations!!

Voy Kay Conqueror of Challenges

Dear Sunnylady, that's a great tip you gave there. Ad a touch of orange to new highlights! I will give that a go somewhere in November!
Thank you!!!

Voy Kay Conqueror of Challenges

Dear Tom, foliage remains one of my dooms although, I have days where it is unbeatable and the other day .... dragonlike stuff!

My word, you are right about that other episode! I was immediately convinced to try that one as well in the very near future.
Great tip friend Tom!

The sky color and blending looks great and nice reflections. There was just an extra heavy frost overnight. This is one of my favorites to paint and getting the frost or snow on the trees was a definite challenge.

Voy Kay Conqueror of Challenges

Thank you so much for your great comment! And yes, this is amongst my favourites too!

Did you experience problems with the liquid clear when applying the frost on bushes and trees?

If memory serves I used a mix of liquid white and titanium white so it would stick. I know on my first try I used too much paint so lightened up on the second attempt.

Voy Kay Conqueror of Challenges

That must be it ForestVueGallery! The liquid clear (as Bob used) worked against me but if I were to have tried liquid white, I might've come up with a far better result!!

Thanks my friend, very valuable advice!! Happy painting!

Very happy to help!! 😊

Looking at it, I believe I used the edge of a deer foot or a well used poly tip filbert for the highlights which allowed me more control. I’ve abandoned the use of the 1 and 2 inch brushes for highlights.

ForestVueGallery I have a feeling I will also abandon the large brushes for highlights. I think for Bob Ross it was a speed thing, whereas we can take more time with smaller brushes. I'm hoping for more control over the brushes so I'll be experimenting with my next few paintings and see what happens.

TLP it has made painting much more enjoyable for me. I can work on a painting 2 or 3 days if need be. I’ve purchased a lot of paint brushes to find out what works for me. I really like the Princeton Select brushes. In particular the 1/4” Dagger Striper - wonderful for grasses and very distant pines, the Deerfoot in all sizes are great for bushes, trees and highlights, and make nice splashes under waterfalls. The Filbert Grainer 1/8” and 1/4” and larger are nice for many details like water movement and fine grasses, etc. I’ve even taken to cutting a small piece of natural sponge to paint leaves and rocks.
Bob once said “you can put it on with an old shoe if it gets the job done!”
Like you said, in his 25 minutes he had to slap it on fast!

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