paintings in progress... the NYC series


Something I'm really trying to work on is slowing  down.  Better planning when laying out my values, better planning when determining my palette, better planning when laying out my composition.... noticing a trend here? I'm way too excited about the painting idea that I have that I dive right in thinking that my enthusiasm will make up for my lack in planning. I'm going to walk you through a painting of New York City that I really thought through before getting started. It was the first painting that I consciously slowed down on and I can see a noticeable difference.

So first things first.... the sketch. I sketched in these little rectangles until I found a layout for my composition that I was really pleased with.

Next came the underpainting in shades of grey. I like black and white for the underpainting because I can really, really see the values, and I like they tone it gives to a cityscape once the colors start to lay on top.

I'm working in oils here, so in order to preserve the fun yellow of the cabs and street lights, I went ahead and laid that color in first- I like to have those super saturated colors laid in first instead of working it in later. I find that its a nicer wet in wet look to have the yellow brush into the color I'm laying around it than to have the surrounding color get worked into the yellow.

Here it is all shiny and finished! I added in some teals and phthalo to accent the warm buildings and  taxis. You can pick it up here in my shop!