The painting isn't finished yet but I thought I'd put all the sbs I did on it sofar in the correct section for future reference (and I need a break from painting hair ) Foilage 1. Before starting on this I gathered some references of forests (some for shapes and details others for color and atmosphere). I scetched the general shape I want the forest to be in and am now picking different parts from references I like and put them in the painting. As this is "just the background" I didn't make a elaborate scetch and am just winging it as I'm reasonably confident I'll be able to pull that off . If one is going for rather safe than sorry draw it all out first. I start mapping out the general shapes/forms and lights and darks taking a lot of peeks at the references for idea's. In this case I used a mix of sepia and burnt umber. As I'll be using transparants everything done now will influence what is layered on top including the color. Only sepia would be too cold and I was afraid using only umber would make it to warm as all subsequent colors will also be in the "warm range". So the solution was to mix the two For the parts where I will have foilage I used a texture FX stencil and some torn appart scotchbrite to lay down some initial texture (this is just filler that saves a ot of time) after that I did a whole lot of scribling to add more texture and soften up the masks (in the end I dn't want it visible that a mask was used). As this is nature I ry to keep it a bit chaotic, I do keep an eye on the general balance but try to avoid a designed look. Especialy for the branches in the background i just randomly put some lines down. I already decided that this is the "background of the background" and I'll add some branches going over this when it's finished to add some more depth. If I end up with a part I don't like I'll just cover it up with those branches. While doing this I try to keep in mind the direction of the light which is indicated by the not yet visible nymph (important as its easy to get distracted/coppy the light of the reference one is staring at) 2. The ground was done in the same manner. The debrish on the ground was done after the basic texture/light and darks was in. I just drew some lines with an electrical erasor, added some shadow and fogged them over a bit. 3. With a pencil erasor I added more texture and tried to get rid of the remaining mask outlines where they were still noticable. This is just some random scribling but I keep in mind my light source and do some more/harder scribling in those area's I want as my lighter areas. 4. For the ground I did the same only here I was a tad more carefull with the direction I scribbled in (has to follow the direction of the ground). I roughly went over the trees in the foreground to add some texture and the "illusion" of detail. just a few rough strokes will do for this, I don't want to get too detailed here as itis stilla background and shouldn't distract from the foreground later on. 5. I aded the light beams shining through the foilage with the erasor pencil and a big fat erasor 6. With the electrical erasor I added (scribling) some more detail especialy in the light areas of the foilage and the sun beams. 7. 1st layer of paint and erasing is in next will be adding the 1st layer of color. Foilage pt 2 the photo's are a bit crappy, i had to make them with my phone and colors change a bit depending on the time of the dag and wether the sun is out or not but it should give a general idea . 1. For the foilage I started out with yellow ocher. the parts that are leafs are hit considerably harder than the background areas, the light ray's where hit even less (just added a slight bit of color). The ground was also hit lightly with this followed by a layer of brown ocher with a drop of brickred ocher. While in the foilage area I realy just fogged area's on the ground I was more carefull and did a lot of detail scribling especialy in the shadow areas. 2. With burnt umber I added some more detail on the ground area, I also used this to fog in some shape on the ground. 3. I mixed E'tac rainforest green with illustration vile green to get the green shade I wanted (rain forest green is realy bright and the vile green toned that down). As in step 1 the foilage was hit harder than the background especialy the shadow areas. The light ray's where spared with this color 9they are only going to get hit with yellows). In the shadow areas of the foilage I also scribbled some shadow/detail with it. 4. The ground was hit with this color also (in some spots) just to get a bit more color variation going (I just fogged it in where I thought it was needed). The edge of the ground was hit pretty hard with this color to fade it into the background and create the illusion the ground fades away into the forest. As the green wasn't enough to get that effect I also went in with burnt umber to enhance the effect. The umber was also used to add some shadows on the floor from trees that are out of frame. 5. With a paencil erasor I lightened/texturised up the highlight parts of the foilage and considerably lightened the sun ray's. in the background I scribbled a bit to get some more texture going. I considered adding more detail to the ground but that looked good as it was so I left that for what it was. 6. In the foilage I added some detail with the electrical erasor in the parts that were hit with the pencil erasor. in the background the electrical erasor was used to scrible a bit more detail, especialy in the sunray's. 7. With a mix of yellow ocher and culebra gold I hit the areas where I used the erasors. The background and sunray's where also hit with this (the spots with ray's a bit less). the whole ground area was fogged over a tad with this to give it a bit more wamth. As the areas between the foilage in the background had become a tad to warm I added a lot of transparant white to the mix and fogged over those areas (I made sure not to hit the light ray's with this) 8. To create more depth I used an electrical erasor to erase some branches and leafs (if I hadn't done this I think I would have needed to spend some more time on the back ground making it more detailed and creating some more depth) 9. With burnt Umber I colored in the branches. I added a few drops of green to get a dark green. i scribbed some detail throughout the foilage. I fogged in a transition from the shadows to the lighter areas. To give the foilage some more boday and have dark detail going I scribled foilage in the shadow areas below the parts that I had erased. 10. I used rainbow green and vile green again to color the foilage. I added less vile green as this part is alowed to be a bit brighter green. 11. With the electrical erasor some more detail leafs were scribled in the lighter area's of the foilage. 12. The parts i just erased where colored with a mix of culebra gold and yellow ocher. I fogged over all this new foilage to blend it all a bit.