Friday, September 12, 2008

Coloring a glass of water, part 2

Here is my final artwork for the post I made a couple days ago about coloring a glass of water. After reading through this you'll see why I chose to break this into two different posts. This is pretty tricky, so don't feel bad if your work does not look like mine on the first try.

This Karen Lockhart Stamp is a perfect example of coloring something inside a glass and under water. Just like the simple glass of water, we're going to color in the same order to get our clear jar to look transparent and tinted. Instead of the glass being purple though, old mason jars have a nice blue or turquoise tint, so we start with that.

First, let's start with the jar. I'm choosing a nice rich turquoise for my old mason jar. Then, just like my glass of water, I fade out with the blender. Let this layer dry! Then, come in with my water layer. If you don't wait for the first colors to dry then you'll loose the crisp definition between water and glass, and you'll have so much blender on the paper it will bleed and feather (ask me how I know).

The colors I've chosen don't have too much color difference, but this picture is so small that it really doesn't matter as much since it's the shadow we're really working on today.

Next, we color the the plants.

Remember, the stems in the water will be lighter than the stems in the jar, which are lighter than the rest of the plant. Here I've chose a light YG for the underwater portion, a darker YG but touched very lightly to draw stems inside the glass, and I use that same green for some of the leaves outside the glass.

My shadow is coming from behind (this is also so you can see the final shadow a bit more clearly), so from where we are looking the plant parts closest to us will be shadowed. To dim them down I overlayed a G85. Remember, colors in the 80's or 90's have more gray in them, so the G85 toned down this whole side of the boquet, yet it's green so we kept the feel of plants.

Shadows thru Water
Now we get to the tricky part. Our shadows for this picture are coming from above, left, and behind. See my diagram up close to understand better. The glass is clear turquoise, and our water is blue so our shadow will be blue and turquoise. However, shadows are also more gray than the original object, so we need to make the shadow for the water gray blue green.

In this case I have the perfect color for the jar, a BG93. The gray is built in, and when I layer on the BG10 I used for water it really looks like it belongs with the colors in the jar.

Start by lightly drawing in the shape of the glass. I know this part is tricky, so practice with a pencil a few times until you get a pleasing shape before you try it on your final piece.

Don't worry about the plants inside yet. Look at how I colored the water in completely. Because the picture is so small and I know that I'll be adding the stems I can get away with this (I'll really talk in-depth about true lighting through water sometime later), otherwise I would fade out the middle of the water-shadow more. Note also that I left the top portion of the jar shadow clear. This simulates the part of the jar with no water.

Next, add your shadows for the plants. These are NOT see-thru, so I'm going to make them pale cool gray (I'm using cool gray because the blues in the cool gray will match nicely with the blues in our water-shadow). Start light, you can always go darker. In this case I started with a C1 and roughed in my shape. Once I liked it I added the C3 and a hint of BG93 just to tie in the colors a little better.

Remember, shadows closer to the ground will be darker and crisper, getting softer as we get farther away from the object.

Here is our final piece, with all my notes erased so you can see how it all fits together. Can't you see this jar of flowers sitting on a patio table as the morning sun shines across the porch- the shadow makes the difference. Have a great weekend! Paper: Neenah Classic Crest, Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black Image: Cottage Flowers, Lockhart Stamp Co.


TanyaMac said...

A friend of mine told me about your great blog. I've been enjoying catching up on all your great tuts! Thanx a million for this one ;)*

Unknown said...

Thanks for the tips and tricks!!! Can I link you!?

Nicole said...

That is the most awesome shadow ever, especially showing the darker underneath side of the flowers and shadowing through the water!

Seriously I am totally impressed with what you can do with MARKERS! Amazing.

Michelle Johnson said...

This is an excellent walkthrough. Having the shadows adds that little detail that can really make a picture. Thanks for continuing the glass/water lessons.

Linda Carson said...

WOW! Gorgeous artwork! Your blog is priceless!

Monika/Buzsy said...

Great tips! I have this image so I am going to try these colors... I never know what to do with the jar... TFS!

Sandy Knecht said...

Great tutorial on shadow and glass. You're awesome. Thank you!

Debbie Olson said...

Marianne, this is beautifully colored--I adore that shadow!