Light and shade

Light and shade

I have always much admired those beautifully detailed pencil drawings that some talented artists are able to create, sadly not me. But I think that is one reason I enjoy painting in Payne's Grey. It creates a dramatic piece, a serious looking painting and is very satisfying to create. It is a colour which works so well when painting elephants and rhinos especially.

I begin as always with a line drawing.

Then I can get down to studying the animal, where the lights are and the shadows. The textures that make up the skin. I start at one end and work my way across, no magic here just careful and interesting mark making. Just Payne's grey and water.

I love the way the animal starts to appear, a real solid shape. I like to blur the feet so it doesn't have a definite end on the earth. I want it all to work as a whole. The skill with watercolour is particularly in the amounts of water and paint used, I just practice and try to get it looking 'right'. On I go

It is in essence a simple tonal study . I love the dark shadows as they really make the image 'pop'

Finally I added some Payne's grey to the outline of the rhino so you don't lose the shape of his back. It also adds some more contrast to what I hope is a dramatic painting.


Back to blog

1 comment

It is funny, I do pencil drawings and sometimes it feels like I am drawing every single hair. I have always wanted to paint lovely loose watercolours but when I have tried in the past it has never worked out. I love your watercolours and so does my mum. I recently bought her a print of one of your hares for her birthday and she loves it. So I just wanted to say thank you and tell you I was very impressed with how quickly I received the print and the card.

Sarah-Jayne Roberts

Leave a comment