This post is going to be about the concept of trying to create effects as opposed to just portraying things in art
Lately I’ve been watching a lot of lectures by the artist Stephen Baumann and creating effects is something he brings up a lot. Of course hearing about it over and over again made me start thinking how I can incorporate such an idea into my work
Now a large percentage of these effects have to do with light and how it shines on or bounces off an object. For example, I can see in this photo that I’m working from that there’s a light shining on his eye
and in my underpainting, I’ve attempted to capture this by painting white dots in the appropriate places.
I’ll make further attempts when I add the color by using various glazes, which will probably include transparent mixing white.
You’ll see that I made the other eye extremely dark. This contrast serves to make this eye look even brighter. Contrast and lighting are the most important things in making a painting stand out. They’re things I’m committed to paying more attention to.
In truth you really can’t have a good lighting effect without contrast because it’s by making surrounding areas so much darker that you make whatever you’ve chosen to be your lighted area so bright.
I’ve talked about how I deviated from my reference photo while working on my painting “Mother Walking With Child” and I was willing to do it with this one too. I was willing to make the contrast between the lighted areas of the monkey and the shaded areas more stark if that was necessary to get the effect I was going for.
In my painting “In Coming Okapi”, I attempted to create the effect of sunlight bouncing shining on the okapi’s fur by painting that part of the fur lighter than the others and glazing hansa yellow light over it.
So, question time. How do you feel about creating effects in your work? Tell me in the comments below.
Painter of portraits and wildlife