1. Set up a still life, get materials ready, tape paper to a board and then lightly draw the shapes and shadows.
2. Mix a puddle of each color planned to use and then lay in light washes allowing them to mingle a little (including into the shadows).
3. After first layer has dried begin glazing color to add depth to shapes, being careful to leave as much light as possible, especially where there are highlights on the fruit.
4. Add layers of color where needed to create contrast. I didn’t take the time to use masking fluid to protect the white pith of the cut lemon but wish I had. The other option was to use a smaller brush and be more careful laying in the shadow…it bled into the rind area a little.
5. Continue adding layers of paint after each one dries. Some layers of paint dried too quickly (or I didn’t smooth the edges out soon enough before they dried) so it produced a harder edge where the fruit color goes from shadow to highlighted body color. I tried smoothing out with barely damp brush sometimes….
6. I also used complete light washes or just water to smooth out the transitions from shadow to highlight on the fruit (must be done when the layers underneath or dry or it will make a bigger mess).
7. Add dark touches for details and cast shadows on the plate and background. The dark cast shadow on the cardboard background didn’t look natural to me. I think because the cardboard was at a funny angle that didn’t imulant a wall very well. Plus it was so dark it drew too much attention.
7. So I added water and lifted as much paint as I could (by dabbing gently with soft tissue to absorb the paint) and added a light wash to just make it look more like an abstract background. I lifted paint in a few other key areas to clean up edges or add definition. I also glazed a little more yellow and green over the shadows to suggest the reflection on the white plate.
8. The completed painting…..please add title ideas in the comments.