Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Watercolor Skies

Pikes Peak Sunrise  LWatry©2014
I recently taught a class on painting skies in watercolor. The painting to the left of Pikes Peak is one of the finished demo paintings that I did for the class.

Before I began the painting, I masked the moon in the upper right and masked the edge of the mountain so that I could paint in my sky without having to worry about painting around those areas.

The sky in this painting was done wet-in-wet. I started by painting clear water onto the sky area and then I used peaches, pink and blues to paint in the colors of the sky. I let the colors bleed together so that they would have soft edges. The blue is ceruelian blue and the peaches were made from permanent rose and aureolin yellow.

Because this is a sunrise scene, the land needed to reflect some of the same colors that are in the sky. So, the white snow area received a wash of some of the peachy pinks that are in the sky. Then I used some purple to add the shadows. The lower part of Pikes Peak was painted with muted or grayed down colors and I let the color fade at the bottom to give it a misty effect.

There are many techniques and ways to portray skies. Experiment and have fun, don't over work them. Some of the best skies are done with minimal brushstrokes and the color and water is left to mingle and create exciting passages.

1 comment:

  1. Lori, I look at this scene every day...each day and hour paints a different picture...you've caught one of those special moments so well...and thanks for sharing your process.