Thursday, April 26, 2012

Monochromatic Sailboat Painting: Creating Contrast With One Color

Sometimes I use internet art-based forums to find challenges that motivate me to try something new. This month's challenge on "Paint My Photo" is to interpret a photo posted by another member with a monochromatic painting. It's a really great site where people freely post their original photography and basically let you create whatever it motivates you to create! Some of the stuff people are willing to share is simply stunning, such as the original to this piece here.

9"x12" Soft Pastel on Pastelmat
"Evening Tranquility"
I found the beautiful photo of a boat moored on a still lake on the site and it has such a terrific mood to it. I had originally planned on painting it with the colors intact, but this challenge seemed to fit well with the general tone of the original leaning towards a blue tint.

The only concern I have is that the cream cast that the paper is creating. I had actually tinted the paper, that is, take one mid-tone blue and swathed it on the entire thing, lightly filling the tooth of the paper so this exact thing wouldn't happen. Perhaps I should have scrubbed it and done another layer. It's very interesting to note that even though I only used 4 shades of blue.. a very dark navy, a normal navy, a midtone blue and a fair sky blue, thanks to the paper and the photograph, it has some interesting grays, creams, and even some violet there in the right corner; I see it!

A little more true to life. 
As I walk away and contemplate it, I like it more and more. But in real life, the cream and violet isn't a true attribute of the painting, as you can see here with this photo of it at an angle, the paper peeking through isn't as vivid in real life.  So what do you think? A happy accident, maybe? I'd love to hear your comments. Maybe next time I skip the underpainting and let the cream do its thing?


  1. Gorgeous painting. Monochrome blue creates its own mood. Any scene painted in monochrome blue comes through as Late Twilight, mysterious and a little magical. It's the one color that reads true when all other colors are gone.

  2. Briliant art. The way you give life and personality to animals is amazing. AGREAT BLOG! Thank you for sharing. Greetings from Australia.