Sunday, 29 September 2013

Day 26 of the 30 Day Challenge, Autumn Mahonia Leaf

I found this leaf a couple of days ago in the local park. It's some type of Mahonia and was still on the plant, which had just starting to change colour on odd leaves, this was the most advanced with just a small amount of green remaining at the base and leaf margin. It belongs to the same plant family as the two leaves I painted earlier in the challenge, they were old leaves, found in the leaf litter, so probably from last year. This one is much brighter. Doesn't seem possible that a plant can change from a dark green to such an intense red!

 Colours: A wash of Transparent Yellow was laid down first. While still wet I added a mix of Quinacridone Red and Permanent Carmine. I continued to work on the leaf  while wet and added Perylene Maroon to the red mix to darken slightly. I layered the washes and painted around some of the most dominant veins. I also added a mix of Raw Umber and French Ultramarine for the light brown areas and Cerulean Blue on the Highlights. For the green I used  a mix of French Ultra Green Shade and Transparent Yellow. While still damp I added some faint brush work to pick out the darker edges around the veins using Perylene Maroon and Burnt Umber - this approach gives softer edges and the suggestion of veins. Once dry I added some dry brush work wher the reds were richer and added some Neutral Tint to the red mix. A final wash of the initial red mix was applied in selected areas but adding some Aureolin to it this time, this served to brighten the reds in places. I continued to add detail around the veins, leaf margin and in the indentations where the leaf curves. 

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