Working with green

I found time recently to paint the view off my patio. I live on a golf course, which means there is a lot of green. The only things that break up the green are the golfers’ outfits.

I am not really happy with the result of this sketch, but I got a few things out of it. Working with so much green is difficult, and perhaps more time could turn this around, but it isn’t worth the trouble. I had trouble getting the values worked out properly and getting the different greens to look right while modifying the value. This is something I need to work on. It didn’t help that I rushed this as well without thinking it through properly, and then overworked it. I think when I feel time constraints I have trouble slowing down. Great athletes have a way of slowing the game down in their heads. I need to get to that point while working outdoors. Any tips?

Thanks for reading.



5 thoughts on “Working with green

  1. davidtripp June 6, 2014 / 10:54 pm

    Corey, I know this frustration. When I’m working en plein air, I get restless after an hour has passed, really dissatisfied if I spend three hours on the same painting. I do think speed is important when working on site. As for the continuous greens, I faced this issue earlier this year when I worked on my Beavers Bend Oklahoma fly fishing painting. Aside from the outcropping of rock, I had a forest of solid green. Cezanne acknowledged the difficulty of differentiating between all the greens in a spring landscape. I begin with Transparent Yellow and Winsor Blue, then work with varying touches of Winsor Red, Winsor Orange and certain touches of Alizarin Crimson and Winsor Green. I just keep varying the amounts of water and pigments to separate the varying species of trees. I find it extremely difficult. My Oklahoma painting was done in the studio over a period of days.

    • coreyaber June 7, 2014 / 6:25 pm

      I recall that painting and liking how you managed to vary the greens. I will have to take another look. Thanks for the tip on the paints you use. For this I used transparent yellow and Prussian blue as the base, perylene maroon, cad red light, and The blue shade of Pthalo green. I also used some ultramarine and paynes grey. Really searching in there. I think I had some yellow ochre as well. In some places I recovered the light spaces coming through the shadows with titanium white covered with some brighter greens. I will have to keep at this challenge and see if I can sort it out better. Sargent seems to have done well with it, but he usually had something else going in. This sketch might have been better with a golfer in it. Thanks again for the helpful comment!

      • davidtripp June 7, 2014 / 7:42 pm

        I always love talkling to you about art and listening to your observations. I always struggled with my cad red turning to mud. I’ve been more successful mixing Winsor Red into my green concoctions. I also find Permanent Rose and Quinachridone Red to be cleaner in the mix with greens.

      • coreyaber June 9, 2014 / 9:28 pm

        Likewise. I will have to try out winsor red instead. I need to drop paynes grey too. I got it thinking it would make nice dramatic darks and clouds, but then I get tempted to use it where I shouldn’t and it looks like soot.

      • davidtripp June 11, 2014 / 11:28 am

        I used to be crazy about paynes grey and don’t really know why I dropped it (I still have half a tube of it in my supply). I do get a pretty nice arrangement of cool greys with the limited palette I use now.

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