Wednesday, May 8, 2013

"A Stone Bridge" --- Sold

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After came back to Austin, I immediately resume my study on gray colors in landscape painting. This is  a very high key painting I did yesterday. Please correct me if you think I am wrong: I feel low value gray colors are easier to look "dirty" than high value gray colors. Making clean gray paintings has been challenging me for a while. I would appreciate if some one can verbalize some principles of using grays. Currently, I am working like a blind person touching an elephant. I am learning the hard way. I know I will be there eventually. However, if some advance painters could help me out, it would be great.


Adam said...

Qiang -- have you looked at what Roos Schuring is doing lately? Her use of grey is amazing. She is a plein air artist out of Amsterdam. Top quality work that might inspire you when it comes to greys. She is also very friendly and responsive on Facebook.

Diane Greene said...

Graydon Parrish said once that there's no such thing as a dirty color, just a color that's the wrong value or chroma. Anyway, food for thought.

Sherry Schmidt said...

Beautiful Qiang! I think YOU are the "advanced painter"!

Johan said...

I agree with Diane Greene.
I'm far from the advanced painter but I am trying to find solutions for my grays just like you. What works best is to always keep asking myself if the color temperature and the value of my last stroke is ok.

EJHamilton said...

Hiya Qiang...Oh I absolutely know where you are at. You have to be able to perfect the grey tones in nature or you will never be satisfied. You'll pull your hair out if you think you have a muddy sky or a muddy white rose! But Quiang, you have to question if others see how you see and why you see and paint what you see. Are you striving for pure pigment perfection when nature actually gave you mud and you painted mud. I see muddy canal waters in your painting with yellow ochre, umbers and permanent blues within the low values. You aren't trying to capture crystal blue sea with phthalo and cobalt turquoise sparkle. In your painting, mud is good. I understand your dilemma though, when I paint there is always a transition between the warm and cool tones which feels difficult, muddy. The warm and cool tones within your grey have to compliment each other perfectly, for example you wouldn't use lemon yellow warmth and cerulean blue cool together...yuck! I've been studying Renaissance techniques and trying to perfect the grey tones of grisaille underpainting. Check my blog under the Delphic Sibyl tab,
Elena xxX

Stephanie Berry said...

I saw this and thought "WOW". The multi grays make a very beautiful scene.

Kimberly Kelly Santini said...

Qiang, I think your paintings are marvelous and I admire the tenacity in which you tackle various challenges. While I cannot pretend to paint with an ounce of the brilliance you demonstrate regularly, I will share with you a trick I've learned about handling grays and neutrals.

If you can set up your palette for a particular painting using a limited number of tubes of color and work from that pool of candidates for every possible mixture in your painting, the colors mixed will automatically be harmonious. Having harmony among the neutrals/grays is key to having them read in a non-muddy way (at least to my eye).

I've also had success working a limited palette and using compliments to create my grays/neutrals.

And if you take it one step further and hit every single color mixture in a painting with a hint of one tube color (the idea of a Mother Color), again your colors will sing with harmony, including your grays.

I look forward to seeing what you do with these studies. Your work inspires me to pick up my brushes every day - thank you!!

Happy painting!

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