It’s fun painting with colors, but values in painting are what make successful paintings.
The value scale has white on one end and black on the other end with greys in between.
When you are planning your paintings, concentrate on getting three different values into the painting.
Good composition says to vary the size of the elements of your painting. Repetition is boring, so make each part a different size.
will be a different size and value; light, medium or dark.
What if our paintings were all the same value? They would look very flat. Without a difference between lights and darks, we could not see any of forms in a painting.
In order to see the lights and darks, squint your eyes and look. All the
details will disappear and you will see only the light and dark tones.
We ladies don't need any squint lines, so we just lower our eyelids.
Look at the left image. Do you see the lights and darks? You may see it better in the gray-scale image.
Lower your eyelids and look at the things around your room. Notice the light and darkness of different things in your room. Train your eyes to see the light and darkness of the things around you.
Look when you are going down the road - as a passenger of course. Things will suddenly become more alive as you.
Duplicate what you see into the values in paintings. It is lots of fun.
In nature things get lighter in the distance. This is called aerial perspective.
Particles in the air reflect light, thus making the distant objects appear lighter. On a very clear day you can see farther because there are fewer particles in the air.
In the painting above the mountains in the background are much lighter than the foreground.
Aerial perspective is doing its job. Artists duplicate the values in paintings by adjusting the light from the front to the back of the painting.
Different colors reflect or absorb more or less light. Yellow reflects the most light of any color. The light bounces back off the color into our eyes. This makes the color look lighter to us.
Purple is the darkest color. It adsorbs most of the light rays. Very little light bounces back to our eyes. So the color looks very dark to us.
There is no rule that says a person has to paint something its actual natural color. A painting will work as long as we use light against dark.
Dolphins are actually gray. Plain old gray is boring to me. I painted these dolphins pink and purple instead.
The values are what made the painting work, regardless or what colors were used.
The focal area is the place to use your lightest lights and your darkest darks. The strong contrast of lights and darks automatically draws the eye to that area.
We also use more saturated colors in the focal area.
The high contrast between the bright, light wall of the back barn and the dark doorway draw the viewer into the painting.
The contrast of the values in the painting, along with saturated colors draws the viewer's eyes to the focal area.
As much as I love color, a painting must have good contrast and a variety of values to be successful.
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View your subject thru the slots in the Gray Scale and determine what value to paint your subject.