Sunday, 26 October 2014

Another go at Roses

The mild weather is playing tricks in my garden and some things are beginning to produce a second flourish! I have 2 large opium poppies ready to flower again which I have never seen before, but do not know if we will have enough sunshine to bring them fully open!
It also means that there are a number of roses out at the moment, two or three on each bush, so it seemed like a good time to have another go at painting them.

I started with one 'Peace' rose, which I photographed from various angles, and used these to make the initial drawing. I think I used mixtures of Yellow Ochre and Indian Yellow for the hearts and Opera Pink and Quinachridone pink for the flushed edges.

Using the same technique as so often described, I painted as close to the pencil line as possible and then erased it once the paint was totally dry.
I worked one flower at a time, adding bits of green and some background (this gave me the edges of the white petals ).

When all the flowers were painted and the leaves, buds and stems added, I put in a dark background of mainly Indigo and Ultra Marine, together with odd patches of the Quinachridone Magenta. I always try to put the colours of the subject into the background.
I then tried to lose some of the edges by adding washes of white Acrylic Gouache.

I am not really sure it worked, but I did enjoy doing it and whilst I had some roses I was determined to give it another go.

This time it was a couple of pink roses, but I put a wash on the paper before starting as I though this might be a better way of losing some of the edges and keeping the painting a bit freer.

When the background was dry ( Still Qinachridone Magenta and a little Opera Pink, being especially careful with the green as this will give dull colours if allowed to mix)

I then did the drawing and tried to work the roses into the patches of wash in the background.

Again, it was one flower at a time, and removing the pencil lines as I progressed.

When I had finished painting the flowers, I was not sure if I needed leaves and stems, so I will live with it a little while before deciding, but one thing for sure, I am really pleased with this one!!


  1. I like them both - they are perfect. I was interested that you put the background in after the flowers on the first one as I had been shown you must do a background first and it has been holding me back a lot! I will not worry so much now about previous advice and just enjoy the process. It really helps that you explain the method you are using as otherwise it would be a complete mystery to me how you arrive at such beautiful conclusions! Your second one is equally successful.

  2. Quite right.....just enjoy finding your own way to do things. I use all three methods, background first, washes first and background last. If I had a pound for each time I am asked which way I do it, I would be a rich woman. However, beginners are told which way to tackle a subject as a help towards getting a result which is good enough to encourage them, so if you go to a class, do not ignore the advice of the professional, but try other ways at home. Hope that helps.

  3. Replies
    1. Thank you, Barbara. I am pleased you like the paintings. What a lovely comment.

  4. Missed seeing your wonderful work and glad to say that your quality is as high as ever. Wonderful.

  5. Hi Mick. Great to hear from you again. Thanks for the comment

  6. I came across you while browsing Pinterest. Your art is absolutely amazing. What I would give to find such a talented teacher here in Austin, Texas. Sigh!
    I have stumbled across a treasure. Thank you for sharing:-)

  7. Thanks for the comment, Marjorie. I am sorry I did not reply sooner, but I did not have an e mail alert of the arrival of your comment, so failed to spot it. Anyway, thank you for the lovely comments, and I hope you continue to enjoy the posts