Painting water is one of my favorite things, whether it is the surf crashing onto the shore or a quiet harbor on a lake. If you are fortunate enough to live near the ocean or a lake or close enough to visit, you know the relaxing qualities of listening to the sounds of waves. Even if you don't, a painting can bring you there.
In this piece, I've chosen to paint a peaceful scene just as the sun is beginning to set casting a soft, rosy glow on the clouds and ocean surface. Come see how this painting is developed:
First I've assembled the materials: a photograph taken by a friend while she was vacationing in the Caribbean which I'll use as reference and a 9"x12" panel which has slots for hanging on the back so the owner can display without a frame if desired. You can see a light sketch I've made in pencil on the panel.
I really like the relaxing qualities of this scene and have painted it once before with watercolor. That time, I kept the monochromatic tones of the photo using shades of violet-gray. This time, I'd like to add more color to the piece and a touch of sunset to the sky.
The next step is to start painting. When painting landscapes and seascapes, I begin with the sky. It's from the sky that the light comes and the quality and colors of the scene will be determined by the type of sky on that day whether cloudy, rainy, evening, morning or midday and all the variations that a sky can have.
You can see that I've mixed a soft blue on my palette above and started to apply it to the sky area.
Next the near hillside is painted in warmer colors since warm colors come forward. I mix colors right on the panel for this. You can see in the next photo the blues and magenta mixes that have occured. Pretty colorful for a dark hillside. However, I use only the reds, blues and yellows on my palette for the colors to keep everything consistent.
This contrast is what makes the boat a focal point in this piece even as our eyes are drawn past the boat to the sunlit area beyond.
The original has been sold, but you can find the fine art print in my Etsy shop, Zehland.Etsy.com.
You can see more Zeh Original Art painting demonstrations here.