Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Painting dark to light

Watercolor painting - Through the mazeSometime back I stumbled upon this page which talks about getting a lot of freshness in painting when one paints dark to light instead of traditional light to dark in watercolors. So I gave it a try.

Sketch - Through the mazeFirst I did the sketch as suggested in the page and then did the painting with some changes from the sketch. In the painting I used the suggested technique in the trees only. And here is the outcome. I think the sketch ended up being more fresh looking than the painting.


Megha Chhatbar said...

Well painting from dark to light is also a fantastic idea. You said it right, it is looking more fresh! Thanks for sharing the article. Well composed and the details are well done!

Art with Liz said...

Hi Prabal, I don't know why I wasn't on your friends list, but now I am and can follow your beautiful work. I always pick up wonderful tips from all you wonderful watercolourists and this is such a great idea resulting in an incredible painting.

Ajay Patil said...

no painting rules . composition rules are hard and fast. in watercolors graded wash is done from dark to light by adding more water . Normally watercolor is painted from back to front ( starting with background the mid and then foreground) if background is dark you can start with darker colors.. painting dark to light requires more control else painting looks very patchy

Ramesh Jhawar said...

The sketch does look better as it is brighter but the painting is good too! It is better to work from light to dark in pure watercolors.

Prabal said...

Thank you for liking this.

I am glad you liked it. Its great to have you on my friend's list.

Prabal said...

Nice analysis. And you are bang on. I think what I have done is really painting back to front and wherever I encountered darks in the background I started with that and pulled the mid tones out of that. The foreground darks were actually done in the end.
Now I understand why I could not use the technique completely. :)

Prabal said...


Thanks for liking the painting and the sketch.

siete said...

Prabal, despite of the fact that I think like you about sketches, in this ocasion, the watercolour is very fresh, at least so it seems, it's very good. ¡Congratulations!

Big hug.


Prabal said...

Your words are always encouraging. Thank you so much.

sreenivasa ram makineedi said...

this is nice looking painting. what kind of paper you use?

Prabal said...


For the sketch I have used Canson Montval and for the painting it was Guarro.