Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Triptych Update

Triptych Sky - Progress Photo

The total expanse of my triptych is 40 inches so even if it was one painting instead of three the sky would be a bit tricky in watercolors. I have some watercolorist friends that have switched to oils or acrylic because of the difficulty of doing larger pieces. Oil, because of the out-gassing, is just not an alternative for me. And I detest acrylic. I used it for 15 years when doing masks and am firmly educated in its limitations. Blending is its biggest.

What I love about the liquid watercolors I am currently using is their ability to blend. And in the pouring of this sky they needed to blend themselves. There are only three colors used in this sky apart from the metallic gold. I sampled the blends by using a scrap of canvas I keep for such purposes. Not all colors play well with each other, but I was very happy with these three. I love the accidentals which occurred here like the orange and the magenta.

Being a triptych I painted the sky all at once with the three canvases laying side-by-side on a table. The colors needed to go from one to the other in a smooth transition (and around the edges of the canvas) and at the same time each painting needed to be complete within itself. So while looking at the whole I had to consider each piece of sky. Quite obviously this is going to have to be how to work the balance of the painting(s). Today the mountains and the foreground. Middle ground (the churches) will be last. The churches are unique to each painting but the three parts of the triptych share the sky, mountains and foreground.

Mind you I am making this up as I go along. This is my first ever triptych and I am learning a lot.

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