Creating Texture in Paintings: Gouache Landscape Painting – 04 Inktober 2019

what’s going on everybody? Brandon
Schaefer here, let’s get right into the gouache painting. So I’m starting out
painting the sky using some very light, kind of thick gouache paint, so it’s
white with just a little bit of black in it since we’re doing Inktober still. And this is a pretty cool scene a
little forest with a small stream going through it. This is in Alaska – or I was
in Alaska when I took this the reference photo. So I’m starting out with the
lightest light here, and I think with gouache I’ve kind of adopted a
watercolor technique, working mostly from light to dark I don’t always do that but
it seems to be my default mode here with gouache. Because normally, like if I’m
doing oils or something I’ll either start with like a mid-tone gray or like a
mid-tone color or I’ll start with like a dark usually the lights are like the
last thing you do. It’s just interesting to take note of that and how
I work with these different mediums. So for this painting, there’s a lot of
texture and dry brushing and possibly, soft edges kind of painterly. So that’s
something I kind of want to touch on a bit here as this painting progresses but
notice in the beginning the painting doesn’t start that way, you know.
I’m there’s a lot of harsh lines which I could soften right now if I wanted to
and I kind of am I’m you know I’m varying that line there of the kind of
the hills or mountains in the distance but everything is painted somewhat
flatly with one main value for the most part you can see the little stream there
it’s a very flat one value the sky flat one value those hills flat one value
basically and now moving into the ground so here we can see I already have four
different values pretty subtle you could really say it’s two different values if
you group them together the sky in the stream are pretty similar and also the
hills and the ground there are somewhat similar there’s a little bit more
contrast there because the ground is a little bit darker than those distant
hills but but for simplicity sake we could say okay so far I have two main
values down so that’s something the Paton just to
like values when I’m when you’re you’re painting especially like inktober this
this is a great tool for learning values learning how to paint painting a
monochrome with just two colors black and white or you could do white with
burnt umber like some kind of brown burnt sienna whatever the case may be
but really simplifying your colors like that can be a help because now you can
focus on drawing you can focus on brushwork and values you know color can
come last so basically at this stage of the painting I’m just blocking in but
notice that I’m starting to get some texture starting to loosen up a bit getting some dry brushing in there and
the way to dry brush is like I just lighten up the pressure that I’m using
for the most part and just try to use a little bit less water a little bit less
paint kind of let the paper do the work even though there’s a smooth paper you
can still get some dry brushing effects so now everything’s mostly blocked in
you can see I started with the ground I knew there was gonna be a lot of texture
a lot of stuff going on so I started trying to put that variation in there
from the beginning so you don’t always have to put it in flatly even though it
is pretty flat at the moment you know there’s not a whole lot of texture and
now I’m really starting to add that I’m going back in with a little slightly
lighter value almost the color of the stream may be a little bit darker and
I’m just rubbing my brush around kind of just you know creating these these leaf
shapes or rock shapes or whatever’s out there there’s just a ton of stuff out
there on the ground so what I’m trying to do is is get a
variety of value very subtle value shifts there and now I’m putting in
these trees and that’s why I wanted to settle value shift on the ground because
that’s how it actually is but now these trees which are kind of like one of the
main focal aspects of this painting you know it’s not really a focal area focal
point really the stream is kind of this focal point with with trees around it
the trees are very important and supporting feature of this painting and
their values a lot darker than pretty much everything else in this painting so
I wanted to leave enough room value-wise to put in these dark verticals in this
painting so so far you could say I’ve had now there’s there’s three main
values basically you know we have the sky in the stream the mountains in the
background and the ground that’s kind of grouped together so we have those two
groupings and now we’re having the dark trees in there so really simply you
could say okay this is three main values right now so notice how I’m painting these trees
this is this is an important point I think for getting like a painterly feel
into your work maybe adding a little bit of texture a little bit of variety I’m
painting them I’m not just doing for the most part I’m not just doing one
vertical stroke and painting these trees I’m doing a bunch of short horizontal
strokes that link together and what that does is it just gives this movement to
the tree and we’ll see as I add more trees you’ll see I do that I paint
almost every tree that way so now I’m painting on the ground I’m putting in
the darkness of the trees that about the same value on the ground in certain
areas and I’m basically I’m just referencing the reference photo that I
have so I’m kind of working from reality what’s really out there so look how I’m
painting these trees okay that one I do a little vertical stroke another
vertical but you can see I’m varying the pressure sometimes it’s it goes down
like thicker sometimes it’s lighter and smaller variety is important for texture
for getting it to look realistic like nature you know if every tree that I if
I painted every tree super hard edges and they were all just vertical lines I
think it would look kind of boring there wouldn’t be any variety to the trees you
know it would just look kind of stagnant you know and here I’m doing a lot of dry
brushing adding in some texture in that background for the over the trees maybe
there’s a lot of like a little bit of foliage groups of trees in the distance
it just adds a little bit of variety of value in there because with this painting it’s one of
my favorites so far for inktober and you know there’s just a lot of texture
a lot of variety and I was trying to to really hone in that realistic quality of
nature because when you look out in nature there are so many different
colors there’s so many little different things happening and that’s what I
wanted to express in this painting like there’s a lot going on in this forest
and that’s what I wanted to capture and the way that I did that was with a lot
of texture as you can see here a lot of dry brushing which as I stated earlier
it’s just kind of using a very light pressure and kind of moving the brush
quickly over the paper and you don’t want a lot of water he almost won you
know a minimal amount of water because if you use a lot of water on the on the
brush with the paint you’re not going to get that dry brushing effect at least
with gouache so you want kind of a thicker thicker paint mixture yeah so
what I’ve been doing here for the last few seconds I’m just I’m just moving
around the painting a little bit and just lightly touching things dry
brushing things adding very small changes everywhere and that’s what I’ve
been talking about getting this variety in there you can see it’s starting you
know it looks chaotic but everything is still grouped together in those values
like I stated earlier the ground in the mountains are this one grouping of value
and now the trees are kind of lumping in there as well but the trees are still
darker so more dry brushing here and this is just getting a little bit of
reflections on this stream and that really starts to make it look like water
I think we’ll really start to get the effect of water here but see how I’m painting the reflection
still even the reflection of the trees I’m not painting them it’s just vertical
strokes you know I’m painting them this
horizontal short horizontal strokes that link together vertically and it just
gives more movement it gives more movement more variety you know I know I
sound like a broken record here but this is like what I’m thinking as I’m
painting this this is what I’m trying to capture like this is what I’m trying to
achieve so now using a slightly lighter value for some of these trees and I just
want to create a little bit of depth to the trees so that there’s a different
layer of trees as if I made all the trees the exact same value it’ll feel
like they’re all in the same plane like they’re all the same distance from us
and I don’t want that I want to want there to be a little bit of distance
between the trees and like have some that are further back some that are more
soft and blurry like there’s more atmosphere and also some trees have as
I’m doing right now some trees that are dark but they also have a lighter value
as they go up you know the values shift on the same tree so the part of some
part of the tree will be dark some part of the tree will be a little bit lighter variety is really the key here and just
finding different ways to paint these trees you can see I’m starting to add
little dots they’re showing a little bit of foliage you know it just creates it’s
a painterly it’s it’s very painterly but looking at it it can look realistic at
the same time so it’s kind of cool it’s just it’s a cool effect you know now I’m
starting to add little dots everywhere so I’m just experimenting using the same
brush the entire time this whole painting was done with this one
number six flat brush and I also think that’s cool too because there’s so many
different marks you can make with one brush and I definitely encourage anyone
out there to do a small painting like this and just use one brush see how how
many different marks can you make how much texture or variety what kinds of
things can you create with this one brush and see now that the bristles are
thus played a little bit so now I’m getting a different kind of texture for
the trees adding a little bit more lights there
kind of some reflected light and the leaves on the ground but definitely it’s
just a lot of a lot of texture a lot of variety of value but you can see
everything is still grouped together I still kept those value groups from the
from the very start the sky is light the stream is light overall the ground it’s
all one grouped value like if you squint at the screen at the painting you can
see a clear separation of values that’s what I was going for even though there’s
a lot of variety within these grouping of values so I hope that makes sense and
I hope you can this helps you add more texture and variety to your work and
just give it a little bit more realism if that’s what you’re going for or just
more texture in general so there’s the finished painting guys I’m going to take
the tape off and I’ll show you the finished painting and also some
close-ups as well so hope you guys enjoyed this episode hope it made sense
to you and stay tuned for the next episode take care of yourself peace

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