Video Library


Use value to create dramatic highlights on a river. Fall foliage textures are explored with tips for a layered look.


Video shows a 16x20" oil with ideas on value, color, and wet-in-wet layers with technical tips on using the knife, and painting light flare. This is a larger demo for me. I talk about working larger and tips on how to maintain focus on larger art. Because of the size, parts of the video are x3 for speed. There are also real-time brush marks and a close-up of the mid trees getting painted. (See Blue Chapter Dots to Navigate). Remember, you can always adjust the video playback speed when viewing to maximize your learning style (slower or faster)

Copy the demo, or use your own scene with similar lighting. Beach, dunes, or river scenes would work well that contain strong lighting conditions (early or late light). It will be essential to plan your light, medium and dark 'groups' of shapes. See Landscape Elements video 1 and 2 in Fundamentals if you need more information on this idea, or want smaller studies to practice.

Vegetation is created through grouping (puffy blob) and marks (contrast and texture). To create the near shrubs and grass I use a combination of these 2 main ideas/techniques.

Watercolor painters can proceed with this demo as is with only slight modifications (dark to light). You might want to put a bit of tape or wax in the bright sunlit spot to make sure the white paper gets preserved. For the vegetation try scratching out, and wet-in-wet. Gouache highlights on the grass tips will work, and pine tree 'rim lights', also gouache cloud highlights could work (watch it does not get too dark, lifting out might be more successful). I would not do gouache highlights on the water as the gouache will seem dull in comparison to the saved white of the paper (paper white is always brightest optically). If you are doing all gouache a water highlight could still work, but a bright highlight in gouache is difficult... you will need a big blob of thick paint with no or barely any water in the mix.