|"Hydrangea Garden" in the original state|
Hydrangea and astilbe in a summer garden by a white picket fence. Perfect! Unfortunately, my first try was so chalky that I almost scraped the painting off. The chalkiness was caused by all the "grays" I used at the block-in stage. That's the trouble with using too much white paint, because these muted, grayed colors are made with lots of white.
Do you remember my experience during Gregory Packard's workshop in May? When one mixes primary, secondary and tertiary colors with white, colors become "duller," but also more nuanced. I am still following his example, mixing big batches of "grays" before starting a painting, which I continue to use for the next painting or two. As you can see in the above example, I have yet to master the fine line between "sophisticated" and "chalky".
I let "Hydrangea Garden" dry and went back with darks made without white paint. I painted lighter leaves on top of the dark passage and punched out sun-lit petals and creamy astilbe. Do you agree that I saved the painting from chalkiness?