Thursday, October 8, 2020

Beginning Watercolor Homework, 10/8/20 Shadows and edges

 First, let's look at some shadows with an eye toward color. The shadows of the poplars in this scene are green, for sure, but not the same green as the grass upon which they fall. They're considerably darker and less yellow. Is it fair to say that the shadows are darker and cooler than the local color? Is this always true? What about the shadow on the white barn, is it cooler and darker than the local color of the barn? Yes and no. It is darker, and it is bluer, but take a look at the eave of the other white building in back of the barn. It's much warmer than the barn in shadow, even though it faces the same direction. How can we explain that? Sometimes reflected light can affect the color of a shadow. In this case, warm sunlight bounces off the roof of the barn and tints the eave a warm gold. 

The shadows in a niche on the facade of the Basilica of Soledad in Oaxaca City, Mexico are complex. While they are all darker than the sunlit areas, some are much darker than others, and some are cooler than others.  Do you see any consistent features of the value and the color temperature? What accounts for the changes? How important would it be to render these subtle variations correctly?

These shadows differ from each other more obviously than those on La Soledad. The shadows on the green dome are green, while those on the ocher doorway are ocher, and the ones on the pink walls are pink. In each case the shadows are darker. Are they also cooler? More neutral? Does it matter? What if you painted them all ultramarine?

How about the edge quality of these shadows? Some, like the sidewalk in the street scene are definitely hard-edged. Others, like the one on the dome, are soft. 

Experiment with potential techniques for creating hard and soft edges like these. When you feel ready, try putting them in a simplified version of  one of the preceding scenes, or one of the following.

No comments:

Post a Comment