Here are the reference photos I'm working with. I'll most likely use a bit from them all. Trying not to just render the image.
A few hours later....
Here are some more pics
I like to leave the color unmixed on my palette and run my brush through it. Leaves random bits of color. Very leaf-like I think. I'm using a fairly large round bristle brush. The canvas is 18x24.
Cooling the colors as I move away from the lightest area. Again, to create that dramatic contrast. Not worrying about shapes except to try to keep things loose and undefined. If you have watched some of my other videos you probably have noticed I'm using a different method this time. No drawing or blocking in. More of a process oriented approach. It's fun! You just have to step back sometimes and get a perspective on it.
Time to get bold and establish some branches. I started with a large flat bristle and a pile of purplish dark. Mostly Utramarine Blue, Alizarin Crimson and some Quin Gold and cadmium red. Holding the brush loosely and pulling it along in jerky motions to mimic the way the branches change direction. Changed to a smaller flat, and finally a liner brush to make different size marks. Be bold! Be free! Feel the branches reaching to the sky! (this is fun!) Came back in with some pure cad red near the light and pure ultramarine in the shadows. These will be partially covered later but I really like that pop of pure pigment in the darks. Realizing I don't like that clump of 4 branches center bottom, will have to work on that.
Came back in with some very light yellow and expanded the glowy sun hole, breaking up some of the branches that are in the light with the light yellow. a few spots of pure white. Blendy, blendy! no edges here! looking for the few branches on the right that are going to be struck by sunlight as well. Will make them mossy later, just looking for value now. broke up the troublesome branches a bit on the bottom. That area in general I have to think about. Don't think I want to put in houses as in one reference. But don't want to leave that harsh value contrast at the bottom, it will lead your eye right out. Hey! There I go thinking again! Now, how do I make it feel like I am UNDER the tree!?
to be continued...
... Okay, so here's today's progress
added more variety of sizes in the branches, using different size brushes, down to a small liner. Added more layers and color to the trunks.
Hope you enjoyed this little WIP project :) The original will be available in my Etsy shop: www.etsy.com/shop/karenilari.