Week 5

Week 5 :

Friday, September 28

Continuation of still life painting.

Remember to bring the painting we started last week. This week I will demonstrate how to add color using transparent and opaque layers.


  • Today we continued work on the still life setup from last week.
  • I demonstrated two ways to add color to a monochromatic underpainting: 1. Glazing 2. Opaque paint. See below for more explaination.
  • Due to my late start I did not get the set up as close to last weeks as I wanted to. I appologise for any frustration that might have caused. Below you will find a new gallery of images of this weeks set up if you are interested in continuing this painting.
  • We will be starting a new painting next week. I will bring in several copies of a landscape photograph for those that would like to paint from a landscape. You are welcome to bring in your own photo reference if you would prefer.

This is my demo painting from class.

Two different options for adding color to a monochromatic underpainting.

1. Glazing can be achieved using a transparent color or by adding clear painting medium to any color. The more transparent the color is, the less color will be added to your painting.  In my demo painting I used ultramarine blue without any medium to glaze the bottle on the left. By glazing I was able to keep much of the detail and value contrast of the underpainting. This is one of the advantages of glazing - you don't entirely cover up the painting beneath. 

2. Opaque is the opposite of transparent - it's not an official style or technique. You can add color to a monochromatic painting by covering it up with an opaque layer of color. It is useful to have your underpainting there as a guide for "value" (light and dark). Try painting a small dot of color to compare it to value of the underpainting. Having the underpainting their to keep your values accurate can be really helpful. Many artists will start with a value study for this reason. In my demo the bottle on the right was painted blue with an opaque mixture of Cerulean Blue, Ultramarine blue, Burnt Umber (to decrease saturation) and white.