Wednesday, August 25, 2010

How You can Paint Your Own Colour Matched Artwork (Part 1)

Painting artwork that includes the colours used in your home furnishings is a popular project.

It is covered in the free report that I give away (the link is above). However it is always interesting to see some actual examples.

I'm going to show you a couple of examples of pictures I've painted to match the bed cover in our bedroom. This post looks at one style of painting and the next post, which will be in about a month, will show a different style of painting. Both will be using the same colours to paint the pictures. These colours have been chosen to match the fabric of the bed cover.

The Colours in the Furnishings

As you can see from the photo the bed cover is a checked design with stone and dark red in the pattern. Trying to buy artwork with these particular colours in it would be fairly difficult. Also I wanted to keep the colours in the bedroom limited as I find that more restful.

Rather than mix up the colours myself I decided to buy a couple of small pots of pre-mixed acrylic colour. There are a couple of reasons for this.

Firstly I was going to paint a couple of pictures, so mixing up exactly matching colours for both of the pictures was going to be a challenge. (I wasn’t going to be painting them at the same time.)

Secondly when I was looking at the range of stone colours I realised that some shades looked a lot better with the dark red than others. So it was easier to buy my favourite shade.

The Style of the Picture

When using more unusual colour combinations it is often easier to go for a more graphic style of painting rather than something that it too realistic looking. Therefore for the first picture I decided to do a simple sunset, or moon set :-) , picture with some palm trees. This was painted on a stretched canvas.

How to Paint It

I started with a rough sketch to place the sun and trees where I wanted them.

Then I drew around a large plate for a circle for the sun. The rest of the picture was lightly drawn on.

Top Tip - Remember that once you paint over the surface with acrylics you will not be able to erase the pencil marks. Remove any unwanted marks before you start to paint.

I painted in the sun with Cadmium Yellow and Titanium White. Once it had dried I painted in the sky with the stone colour, adding white to give some cloud effect areas.

The edge between the sun and sky can be repainted to tidy it up once both sections are completely dry.

I used the dark red to paint in the palm trees and foreground. This can be painted in several layers. Extra layers will make the colour look a bit darker too.

Adding additional details to the foreground area helps to add interest and depth to the picture.

Other Ideas

The contrast between the light area of the sky and the darker silhouette of the trees and foreground is handy for this type of colour matched artwork.

Of course you can use other subjects in a similar way. You could use the silhouette shape of anything you like. For example a bridge, city skyline, hills, and so on. Perhaps even a shape taken from the patterns in your furnishings.

Part 2

Next time I will be talking about the other painting which uses the same colours but with a different style and look.