24. What combination of colors do I use to make beach sand, both wet and dry?
The best beach color is burnt sienna with a touch of cadmium yellow light with a touch of white. Depending on what hue you want you can add a touch of dioxazine purple and/or burnt umber. Some artists even put a little ultramarine blue in the mixture. There can be many different shades of sand so you will have to experiment. The more white you add the lighter the sand color.
For wet sand, it is not about mixing a color as much as it is about reflecting small objects onto the sand, such as, sea shells, pebbles, etc. After you add these objects you apply a thin transparent glaze of white with a little yellow. This technique will make the sand look wet.
25. How do I mix a bronze color?
You can mix various hues and shades of bronze by mixing burnt sienna, cadmium yellow light, with touches of cadmium orange. Bronze has green in it as well, so you can add a touch of burnt umber which has green in it and/or a touch of hooker's green. You will need to experiment with the mixture to get the desired effect.
26. How would I mix Prussian blue from a limited palette?
The basic mixture is: Ultramarine Blue + 50% of Hooker's Green and a small amount of Dioxazine Purple. If you want a warmer tone, add a touch of burnt sienna. Be careful not to add too much purple.
27. I want to create the effect of twinkling stars in a night sky. How would I do this?
The best way to create twinkling stars is to take a stiff toothbrush and load it with a very creamy mixture of white with a touch of Cadmium Yellow Light. Then carefully, with your finger, flick the paint in the sky area. Be very careful not to make it look like snow. Have a wet paper towel handy to wipe off any excess splatters. This takes practice to get the right mixture. It is recommended that you practice on a scrap canvas first.
28. When painting on art board, do I use a different technique than on canvas? Washes perhaps?
There is absolutely no difference in painting on board as opposed to canvas. Just be sure the board is gessoed 2 or 3 times before you paint on it - you can get a smoother effect. Many wildlife artists use board because they can get more detail. Also, sable brushes work great on board.
29. Is there a difference between the focal point and the center of interest?
There is no real difference between a focal point and the center of interest. However, there is a difference between a center of interest and a focal area. The center of interest is a specific object (a person, building, animal, etc.) that your eye is led directly to. A focal area is an area within a landscape painting where you want your eye to end up but which doesn't have a specific object to focus on. It could be just a light area or a winding road, pathway, or river that leads you somewhere toward the center of the painting.
30. I want to paint a painting with a wolf in the foreground with a shadow spirit of a spread-winged eagle in the background. How do I achieve this technique?
The way you create these types of images is by using very thin transparent washes of color which creates a ghostly image. You start with water or oil depending on your medium. Then, add small amounts of white and whatever color you want, if any, for your image. This creates a milky glaze and looks very transparent. This technique works very well for the effect you are after. Also, it works best if you use soft sable brushes.
31. I need to paint a landscape on deer skin. I would really like to paint it on the suede side, as it is prettier. I was thinking of using acrylic first and then finishing it with oil. However, leather shrinks when wet.
You can use acrylic on leather as long as you use a very dry brush technique. It will only shrink if it gets fairly saturated with water. As long as the paints are not thin or watery you should be okay. However, if the leather is very thin and the paint is very wet you will have some minor wrinkling.
32. I find Dioxazine Purple is too strong for my liking. What can I use for a substitute?
Dioxazine is a very strong color. There are many different purples you can use, but they are all from the dioxazine family. To fix your problem, pre-mix a softer, lighter version of the dioxazine purple before you begin each painting. On your palette, add a mixture of purple (about 25% white to 75% purple). Use this mixture as your purple, then add whatever you need for the color scheme (red, blue, etc.) to this mixture.
33. A little trick that is used on a nearly completed painting that may need a little extra something but not sure what.
Use a sheet of Glad Wrap to cover the front of the canvas, attaching it with tape on the back. With the front covered you can experiment on top of the cellophane. This will allow you to experiment without making costly mistakes on your finished painting.