Friday, 11 April 2014

Rainbows of Colour

This weeks subject at Avon Valley Artists Group was Rainbows of Colour. This would be the first time I had done any serious painting at club for some weeks, so I put quite a lot of thought into what I wanted to do. I had a visual image of a chunky pot of flowers reflecting all the colours of the rainbow, and I thought it might be effective if the flowers cascaded down the side of the pot in the correct order.

I was not overly concerned about the accuracy of whether the flowers chosen all bloomed at the same time, I was just interested in a variety of shapes and the correct colour sequence.
I finally chose to include red and orange tulips then yellow roses and green foliage and then blue agapanthus and hydrangea, indigo hellebores (the hardest colour to both visualise and to find an appropriate flower) and lastly violet thalictums. I was not sure if this was going to work, but on the premise that its only a piece of paper and if one does not try, one never knows, I set about it.

I did a quite careful drawing, keeping the pencil lines feint as I never really like then too visible in the final painting. I used masking fluid to protect the stamens of the hellebores and the thalictrum.When I was satisfied that the mask was completely dry, I wet each colour section of the drawing with clean water and dropped in the appropriate colou(s). I let each section dry carefully before adding the next so that each background wash stayed as fresh as possible. Where some of the colours were strong, I painted around the flower shapes rather than randomly covering the area. 

It was then, just a case of painting each of the chosen flowers, some by darkening the backgound painting negative shapes, and others by painting the actual flowers.

I am not too disappointed with the end result but would have liked the hellebores to be much fresher and I am unhappy about the link between the orange and blue sections. I really love the tulip corner!!
Also, of course, none of the colours are repeated elsewhere in the painting,which is a drawback. However, as usual, it was fun to do and I am glad I had a go!


  1. Yvonne - what fabulous colors and it is very eye catching. I am particularly drawn to those lovely orange tulips. Keeping the vase very light really makes these colors sing. Great bouquet!!

  2. Thanks Debbie. I think the eye will always be drawn to the tulips as the colour is so dominant, which is why, compositionally, I should have included the same colour elsewhere in the painting.