Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Light Through Orange Slices

I wanted to see if I could capture light coming through very thin orange slices. This represents close to eight hours of transferring the image onto the watercolor paper with a graphite pencil; then adding color from a pallette that has been sitting silent for about 3 years...drying.

The painting, I think, is acceptable in this small format, but when magnified to larger, or original size, the massive amount of overworking I did shows quickly.

I think with fresh paints, I would have been able to achieve the dark background without the many layers this one required. Also, I wanted the foreground in a light, sap green with reflections coming off the slices. It didn't work out too well when I realized the shadows had to be as dark as they are. Overall, here, it looks ok. I'll post it and see what falls out.

Thanks to Wagner Compelo at Flickr.com for granting me permission to paint his photo.

graphite and watercolor on 140# arches sketchbook 8x10


  1. This is an absolutely beautiful perspective on orange slices!

  2. Nice work, Jim, it really glows!

  3. Jim,
    Your orange slices turned out very well! You sure captured the light through
    Nice work. Your pears are great looking too. Looks like you can pick them
    right off the plate and take a bite!

  4. It doesn't look bad at all. I think you managed to capture the effect you were after. On the smaller reproduction it has almost the look of oil paint, and this could perhaps be because of the overworking you talk about, but in that case, you overworked it well!

    One thing that does strike me though: with such thing slices, I would expect light to some extent to shine through the slices and end up in the shadow area. But your shadows are entirely dark. well, I wasn't there so I didn't see the scene as you saw it. So just a thought about how a bit more sparkle could possibly be added to such a painting.

    But overall, a very attractive piece, and surely much better than anything I could come up with at this stage!

    -Brian, from EDM group.

  5. How beautiful! Those darks are very difficult to get (for me), and the slices really glow.

  6. I'm loving that we get to enjoy the size of painting that is clearly, glowingly working well! Brian's comments are astute and kind advice so I'm going to jump on his trolley and second all of that. Excellent return of the remoistened paints!

  7. Incredible painting, you really captured that light well.

  8. These slices are great! You really captured the transparency of the orange. The light and dark works nicely. I enjoy your blog!!

  9. I think this is great...just beautiful.


  10. Jim,

    Your orange slices have worked briliantly. The darkness of the background and
    shadows brings out their translucency - a powerful marmaladey quality.
    Great work

  11. This is great! The darks you achieved are very rich and set off the orange slices beautifully.

  12. I think it turned out beautifully! Those orange slices just glow against the rich darks.

  13. Great concept! I love the way the light is coming through the slices. Looks great on here!

  14. Nice painting. Glad you are painting again.

  15. Glowing oranges, how beautiful! I think it's amazing.

  16. I am facinated by this painting. I cannot imagine how you got the oranges to look transparent and the light to shine through! Amazing. I have just discovered your art/your blog and am in love!