Landscape step by step – Refinements and finishing touches

I’ve decided to combine the rest of the painting process into a single post, so I can get it published before Christmas (tomorrow is the end of this daily blogging challenge, so I want to do a roundup post).

So, here’s the reference photo again:

burbage-brook

With the values all blocked in, I start to refine some of the values and edges. Here I’m adding some of the lighter, warmer yellow, which will be the focal point of the painting.

I lose some of the rocks on the foreground here, but I’ll add them back in later.

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Here I’m mainly working on the dark bush area on the right, and I also refine the distant hill, making it slightly bluer, but also adding some warm and cool variation to it. I’ve also greyed down the flat area of land just below the hill, which really needs to recede into the distance.

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More of the same here, working on the transition between the warm, light centre, and the dark cool sides. I also took a large soft brush here, and used it in the foreground to indicate some of the long grasses there.

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Next I made some adjustments to the vertical section of the brook, adding some darker blue in there, and reestablishing some dark accents. I’m also working on adding more warmth to the foreground to continue that large yellow sweeping curve.

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In the final stage, I add a few details, with the foreground rocks, which are painted thickly using a palette knife, fixing the rock sticking out of the water, and adding a few suggestions of rocks along each bank of the brook.

I then went around the entire painting, softening any sharp edges that detracted from the focal point. The tops of the hills on each edge are softened to blend into the sky, and I added some subtle white clouds. Finally I refined the edge of the bank with the dark reflection, adding a bit of shadow to the grasses, and some final dark accents in the water.

Sign the painting and we’re done!

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Then there’s the joy of pulling off the long strips of tape, to reveal the finished painting:

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Let me know what you think, and if you found this useful. Is there anything else you’d be interested to know about if I do a series like this again?

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