Author Topic: New Build - New to Flat Figures  (Read 1827 times)

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Mark Cunnington

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2021, 05:48:24 AM »
Today I worked on the boots and scabbard. Thank you for your advice Nicholas and Hannibal. I used a dark grey as a base (with burnt sienna added, a nice touch) and it looks better. It’s different to the hat although the photo doesn’t really show that.
My use of light and shadow is an area I need to work on still as it is not consistent. That’s probably the most complex area of flats. I m pleased with my improving oil techniques. I’ve also bought some decent Kolinsky sable brushes and they make a big difference. I won’t be using them to paint acrylics!
As is usual I will go back to this tomorrow to touch up. I walk away before I get too picky as it often spoils things.
Metallics, straps and flesh to go.

Mark Cunnington

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #20 on: May 31, 2021, 01:47:01 PM »
Although I worked part of the weekend and had the dreaded lawn to cut I managed to have some time on this. The waistcoat and belt are coming along but a second attempt is always needed. That’s a major lesson I’ve learned. I do not like yellow. It is he’s even with acrylics and their covering power. The white lace is quite bright. I’ll tone it down but I like the brightness. I’ve learned and re-learned a lot about oils and this has reignited my love for them. Two new Kolinsky sables brushes are on their way as I’ve been using brushes that have had a lot of acrylic usage.
Now I need to fully understand the use of light and shade.
I must say I am loving flats and I’m already looking to my next one!
The next step is the metallic brass. Any hints?

Nicholas Ball

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #19 on: May 18, 2021, 04:59:01 PM »
Hi Mark, looking good so far. You can add brown or red to grey to give variations of the colour. I have even added yellow ochre- ( this also applies to black as below )
To make a full 3 D effect, when you add the next shadows make the rear of the figure ‘s areas slightly darker to the front.
Coming back to a figure always helps, the other thing is to reverse the photo- this tricks the eye into thinking you are looking at someone else’s work. 
To make a transparent colour like ultra marine more opaque you need to mix an opaque colour to it. For highlight it’s white, for shadows it’s either a raw umber to give a brown tint or Ivory black to keep it blue.
To make black more interesting, especially if you are painting a black figure, add green, brown, purple etc to it- when white is added it will take on the added colour and that way various blacks can be made, which on jackets and trousers just gives a different tone to each for interest.
Looking forward to seeing the next stage.     

Mark Cunnington

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #18 on: May 18, 2021, 03:27:54 PM »
I’ve made a few adjustments to the hat but I feel I should have used Payne’s Grey. I used warm grey and I really don’t like the shade it gives. Hindsight is such a good thing.
The trousers are French ultramarine and I remembered why I dislike that colour so much. It’s not opaque enough despite a blue undercoat. Finally the highlights are more obvious than I’m used to but I’m quite pleased.
I really think the use of light and shade is the real skill in flat figures and one which I need to develop and learn more.
I will return to this and do one last set of light and shade. It always seems better when I walk away and come back to something I’m painting.

Hannibal

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #17 on: May 12, 2021, 04:20:53 AM »
Very good start, Mark, with the hat, in giving light and shadows, and therefore volume, tri-dimensional effect.  Also the white lining at the top edge of the hat, where light usually makes a spot and gives shape to a dark surface.


1. Don't be shy to increase your light more (exagerate a bit), you can always revert after, to make it visible enough = a black suit can be painted dark grey, not black, to be able to paint shadows black and highlights amost white = see shiny boots for example on paintings of great masters.
2. Don't nécéssairily put your light source in the plan of the flat, sideways on the left of the character, but more upfront, to avoid having to paint a character half lightened on the right and half black on the right, and edges only on the right side.  By bringing your light source in your right back (niot totally in your back = flash effect), the lightening on the hat will not be at the edge, but 1/3 to the right, then against darker at the edge. On this way you will also give light lightening to the left side of the hat, flat surface, therefor volume !


3. Use black for shadows, and grey, dark grey as basecolour, On this manner you can bring highlinghts and also shadows and shape your painting in volume.  It gives you more freedom in painting volume....


Cheers ...
Michel
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Men are a bit like God: everything they can do, they do it. Or they will do it.  (Jean d'Ormesson)

Mark Cunnington

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #16 on: May 11, 2021, 03:57:51 PM »
After quite a break (work got very busy) I made a start on the hat. Instead of painting a base colour and laying on the shade/highlights I tried three mixes to lay next to each other and blend. It was harder work and it got a bit mixed up but I see that is a good technique. I'm beginning to get more confident in being less subtle in highlights.
I also soaked away the oil on cardboard and used liquin for the first time. I thought I was experienced in using oils but this made a massive difference. I'm looking forward to the next stage (hat lace and the face) although I think my next sets of days off are about to be cancelled. Damn.

PJDeluhery

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #15 on: April 12, 2021, 03:03:06 PM »
Yes, the red is looking good! Keep it up.   8)
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shogun

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #14 on: April 11, 2021, 06:21:09 AM »
The "Red" looks great!
Greetings from Saxony
Ralf

Mark Cunnington

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2021, 05:16:36 AM »
Thank you for that guys. I had a long week of duty so the figure had dried before I added a further set of shadows and highlights and I like the effect. The picture may not do it justice and I may tinker with a further set...

PJDeluhery

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #12 on: April 06, 2021, 01:06:29 PM »
Your shadows and highlights may require a second or even third coat to get them to the right values. Especially for Alizarin Crimson which is semi transparent.
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marko

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2021, 01:36:19 PM »
Very nice start on this with a color that is difficult at the best of times - reds. 


As a member you might also look in the knowledgeable section and an article by Daniel Canet called Painting in Vivid Colors.  He has some examples of the type of thinking and approach I think you are going for on this and has an approach that would deal with your colors running into each other, e.g. like you i paint wet-on-wet and sometimes have this issues well.  Daniel blocks in everything side-by-side which works around this and helps make his colors pop.  As you are doing a large scale figure this may work for you.


mark  8)
« Last Edit: April 06, 2021, 02:16:31 PM by marko »
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Mark Cunnington

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2021, 01:24:36 PM »
It's been a while due to work and then half term holidays but I managed to paint the red coat this weekend. I know I should have started on the face but I liked the reds so much I just had to paint them.
I decided the light source would be upper right (as you are viewing the figure) so he is looking towards the light. I used Cadmium red medium with shadows in Alizarin Crimson and highlights in Cadmium red light. I thinned the base coat down for the first time ever using oils and it initially went on well followed by removal of excess with a soft brush. However, I think I used too much thinner for the shadows etc. as they ran into each other. Should I have let the base dry first?
I then used un-thinned paint for the shadows/highlights and it worked a little better. I am definitely too subtle in highlighting still. That's down to painting too many round figures over the years. Live and learn.




PJDeluhery

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #9 on: March 20, 2021, 11:39:02 PM »
Thinning will still allow you to slowly blend.

If anything, thinning may speed drying, though I'll defer to Ed on that one because I dry my figures in a crock pot overnight. 

I too learn something from every figure I paint. It's one of the joys of painting for me. Never gets old.
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Ed Humphreys

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #8 on: March 20, 2021, 08:34:14 AM »
I have always used W &N's Liquin as a medium. Take the oil paint down to a thin constituency, almost like milk. It will usually be touch dry and ready for another wash, if necessary, in 24 hours. It is very useful for glazing, giving subtle nuances of colour to a base coat.
Experiment and have fun.
Ed H

Mark Cunnington

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Re: New Build - New to Flat Figures
« Reply #7 on: March 20, 2021, 06:38:15 AM »
In reply to your question, Mark, oils can be thinned quite a bit using either a medium, mineral spirits or turpentine. I usually thin oils to about the consistency of skimmed milk. Sometimes it takes two or three coats to get the desired coverage, but you have better control and more pleasing results. Nothing worse than a thick coat of paint on a figure. FWIW, this was the hardest thing for me to learn as an oils painter. I know there is a technique in which you put the oil on without thinning it (straight from the tube) and then brush off the excess. If you're used to working that way, I guess it's worth a try. I could never make it work. The good news is that if your paint is too thin, you can always put on another coat. If its too thick, - not much you can do. So don't be afraid of thinning it out.

Welcome to the forum and good luck in your painting.




Thank you,
Thinning oils is really new to me then as I used them from the tube previously. Does thinning allow for slow blending still? Do oils still take ages to dry whilst thinned.
I first started using oils 30 years ago and I'm pleased to be still learning!


Mark

 

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