Part 1, Project 2, Exercise 2 – overlaying washes

We are asked to use some of the previously prepared papers but this time to paint the second colour over the dried wash. I found this quite surprising, the depth of colour appears to be much stronger and I felt like I had more control. This is what is called glazing and I have done this off and on before but never really concentrated and studied the effects or how to achieve them or replicate them in my work, it’s always been a bit of hit and miss.

I used acrylics for all these colour tests.

It’s frustrating that the photo does not actually show the colour as seen with the naked eye. The violet undertone (dried wash) in this example seems to glow, as does the yellow which has a very faint gradated wash of violet underneath. I tried many colour tests, using small pieces of paper, to see how various colours reacted using this technique. For example:

Underpainted wash Overlay

Violet Yellow

Yellow Leaf green

Yellow Pale Blue

Orange Pink

Magenta/pink Leaf green

Blue Purple/violet made from primary magenta II and primary cyan

The most interesting result was flourescent blue over cadmium orange and my own Purple/violet over Primary blue, which seemed to intensify the blue quite a lot, I wasn’t expecting that.

What this has taught me is to do colour swatches like this whenever I want to create an interesting transition of colours or add colour depth and intensity or spark to a painting. I now have a great collection of swatches, some of which I will paste into my sketchbook for future reference.

We are asked to research Mark Rothko in this exercise, which will be the subject of a separate post.

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