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  • Still Life Techniques
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Still Life - Painting a Vase

  • Slide Show
 
 
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This still life lesson explains and illustrates the step by step process of painting a vase with transparent glazes of color.

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 1

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 1

It is most practical to paint the background first.

  • Before you start painting any still life object, it is best to paint its background first.
  • It is more practical to paint the objects in order from back to front, as it is technically easier to paint the edge of any object over the preceding one.

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 2

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 2

Underpaint the background and foreground with flat colors.

  • Start by underpainting in the shape of the vase with a flat area of opaque color, taking care to establish its outline as accurately as possible.

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 3

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 3

Apply the first layers of dark tone using thin glazes of transparent color.

  • Apply the first layers of dark tone using thin glazes of transparent color, softly blended with a sable brush.
  • The aim at this stage is to establish the basic form of the vase by carefully building up its graduated areas of shading.

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 4

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 4

Apply the decorative band with a flat transparent glaze of green.

  • The band of color around the neck of the vase is applied in a flat transparent glaze of green.
  • Some of the tonal contrast of the vase is lost beneath this green glaze.

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 5

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 5

Rebalance the tonal contrast of the vase.

  • At this stage we rebalance the tonal contrast of the vase with a further application of dark tones.

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 6

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 6

Build up the light tones of the vase with thin glazes of white.

  • Next, we build up the light tones of the vase with thin transparent glazes of white, carefully graduating and blending them with a soft sable brush.
  • The aim here is to create a natural balance between the dark and light tones of the vase.

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 7

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase: Step 7

Apply a range of highlights.

  • Finally, we apply a range of highlights using both transparent and opaque glazes of white to suggest its lustrous surface.

Still Life - Painting a Vase

 

Still Life - Painting a Vase

Painting of the vase in context.

  • The accuracy of your observations is confirmed when you see the finished vase in the context of the other still life objects.
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