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Negative is Positive...

Highlighting  dramatic light through the use of contrasting opaque negative painting techniques. 


I appreciate a warm bright fire the most on a cool dark night. Contrast is a key design element, and to do this in watercolour is to surround or outline light areas with dark,  preserving the glow of the paper and light colours from previous layers by avoiding painting where you want the light to shine. This is called negative painting - "painting away" the areas that you want to fade away leaving the lighter areas alone to stand out. Want a white snowy tree? Paint the contrasting shadows, and the tree appears as if by magic. And there is some magic in there air, on a dark winter night, when the stars and moon appear.


Moon Light

A full moon rises, large and glowing above the eastern horizon. The snow reflects back the moonlight, itself a refraction of the suns luminosity, 

The moon reflects less than 20% of the sun, yet seems white in contrast to the dark sky surrounding it. So I didn't paint the moon white, I painted the sky around it, the shadows in the snow, the silhouette of trees, Does the moon shine out of the surrounding depth of colours of the night sky?


Artic Night

There is nothing more beautiful than the sparkle of freshly fallen snow. Each unique snow flake becomes a tiny mirror reflecting the lights in the sky - an imagined Aurora Borealis on an imagined artic night. 

It's a challenge finding the balance of light and dark - and I chose to use titanium white, a dull non reflective paint, when my snow became to dark. 

To capture the sparkle of fresh snow I dusted mica onto the wet white paint.


In Progress.... 

This story is not finished, the painting is still wet... come back in a while and maybe something will appear here!

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