It's that time of year again. One of the things I miss most since moving from the east to the west coast is how the leaves change color in the fall. What I don't miss is having to rake them up - but it is a beautiful sight while it lasts. I took photos at various stages while painting this watercolor. Got so involved though, that I missed a few stages but will describe the process. For stage one I lightly drew the tree trunks and a few branches and masked them out with masking fluid.
Stage 2: I wet 140lb Saunders Waterford CP paper and painted a layer of aureolin randomly over the sheet. Before it dried I splattered transparent yellow and quinacridone burnt orange mixed with aureolin into the wet paint for the first layer of texture and let this dry.
Stage 3: I proceeded to splash more Indian yellow, transparent yellow and a mixture of Quinacridone burnt orange and aureolin onto the sheet. I spritzed this lightly with a spray bottle which changes the round dots to random shapes that more resemble leaves. I let this dry completely.
Stage 4: For the next to final stage I crumpled up some saran wrap into a ball and dipped it into all of the same colors - plus some Daniel Smith olive green to add some darks - and dabbed this all over the piece. When this was dry I brushed off the masking fluid and painted the tree trunks and branches with a mixture of quinacridone burnt orange mixed with French ultramarine which makes a very nice grey. I added a few more dabs of paint to make the colors a little richer. The final step was making a darker mixture to paint the markings on the bark. The finished piece is what you see in the first painting above.