Art Techniques | 17 November 2016Learn to Create Depth by Painting this Still Life Floral Scene Share article facebook twitter google pinterest Have you ever wondered how to create a still life with depth, shadow and light? The Art of Painting Still Life in Acrylic shows you how to create depth by painting in several layers. Below we see the steps on how to bring a still life floral scene to life! In this painting, I focus on creating depth by painting in several layers. As I often do, I begin with middle values, followed by dark values and then light values. I finish by adding color reflections. Color Palette alizarin crimson • burnt umber • cadmium orange • cadmium yellow • Naples yellow • Mars black • quinacridone magenta • quinacridone red • sap green • titanium white Mixes peach = cadmium orange + white orange tone = cadmium orange + a touch of gray dirty white = white + small amount of cadmium yellow + a touch of gray light green = cadmium yellow + sap green taupe = white + a small amount of burnt umber + a touch of cadmium yellow Sketch Before I begin painting, I work out my composition with a line drawing. Step 1 I paint my board with neutral gray. Once dry, I paint it gray again, this time working alizarin crimson into the wet paint. I let the board dry. Then I draw the outline of the pitcher, flowers, and apples. I paint the apples with Naples yellow, the pitcher with the dirty white mix, the orange daisies with the peach mix, and the pink daisy with white and alizarin crimson. I paint the burgundy flower with alizarin crimson and a touch of white; then I paint the rose with quinacridone magenta and white. I paint the flower center with Naples yellow. To paint the table, I use a mix of burnt umber, white, and a touch of cadmium yellow. Step 2 I add a light green mix to the apples near the stems and on the bottom of the front apple. Then I paint the stem of each apple: sap green for the apple at left, burnt umber for the middle apple, and Naples yellow mixed with burnt umber for the apple at right. Step 3 I use the taupe mix to add dark values to the pitcher. Using a liner brush, I tap sap green mixed with a touch of black around the flower centers. I mix quinacridone magenta and a touch of white for a bright pink and apply this to the red areas of the apples. I use the chisel edge of a flat brush to touch on the striped areas of red. For the larger areas, I use the mopping method so the transition from pink to yellow isn’t too harsh. To deepen some of these areas, I apply quinacridone red. Step 4 I mix burnt umber and quinacridone red for the darkest areas of the apples, including the centers. Where needed, I deepen some areas with pure burnt umber. I tap brown into the scaly area of the bottom-center apple with the chisel edge of a flat brush, using a mixture of sap green and burnt umber. I add a touch of black to the taupe mix and apply the darkest values on the pitcher. Once dry, I apply highlights on the pitcher with white in several layers. I brush raw sienna onto the table to warm up the areas that are mid-value. I use a liner brush with burnt umber to create lines in the table. I add shadows on the table with burnt umber. Step 5 I highlight the apples with white mixed with a touch of Naples yellow. I give form to the apple stems using dark and light values, tapping on the color for texture. I put tiny flecks of the dirty white mix on the front stem. I begin layering dark values on flowers. For the orange daisy, I use the orange tone mix. For the pink daisy, I use alizarin crimson and white. For the burgundy flower, I use alizarin and black. I use quinacridone magenta and a touch of white for the rose. Then I loosely add greens among the flowers using sap green. Step 6 I add some alizarin crimson and white to the orange flower. Then I add darker values in areas of shadow with the orange tone mix, adding burnt umber to darken. I add lighter values using cadmium yellow, followed by cadmium yellow mixed with white. To deepen the areas of shadow within the rose, I use alizarin crimson followed by alizarin crimson mixed with black. I add highlights with quinacridone magenta mixed with white. Within the pink daisy, I add areas of shadow with gray. I add deeper pinks from my palette as needed. I add light petals to the burgundy flower with quinacridone magenta, and then I add a bit of the dirty white mix to the magenta. For the flower centers, I add light green (for a dark value), followed by cadmium yellow and white. I use colors from my palette to deepen flowers where desired and to create color harmony throughout the painting. I also use a liner brush to define petals and add ridges to the petals. For dark values within the flower greens, I mix sap green with black. Step 7 I add specks to the apples with a liner brush and thinned Naples yellow. While still wet, I tap the specks with my finger to blur and dull the color. I paint the baby’s breath flowers by tapping the dirty white mix onto the painting board with the liner brush. I add a touch of sap green into the mix for darker areas. Then I add a touch of white to dirty white and tap lighter areas. I pull the stems with a liner brush using the light green mix. I add darker values to the stems with sap green, followed by highlights using the light green mix and white. I deepen the table shadows with burnt umber and black. I paint the fallen petal on the table using colors from the palette. I don’t forget to add a cast shadow under it with burnt umber. I evaluate the painting and sign once I am satisfied. To protect the finished piece, I apply two to three coats of water-based varnish, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Buy from an Online Retailer US: Packed with beautiful illustrations and expert instruction, The Art of Painting Still Life in Acrylic is a comprehensive and indispensable resource for all aspiring painters. Designed for beginners and intermediate artists, The Art of Painting Still Life in Acrylic offers valuable drawing and painting techniques, as well as inspirational artwork that’s sure to motivate artists of all skill levels. The Art of Painting Still Life in Acrylic opens with a guide to essential information on the necessary tools and materials for both sketching and painting, including pencils, paints and brushes, palettes, supports, and mediums. In addition to learning about basic drawing and painting techniques and color theory, readers will learn how to create compelling compositions, achieve depth, and render realistic textures. This new title in the Collector’s Series features a large variety of stunning still lifes, from lovely florals to tasty treats. Packed with beautiful illustrations and expert instruction, The Art of Painting Still Life in Acrylic is a comprehensive and indispensable resource for all aspiring painters. Share article facebook twitter google pinterest If you have any comments on this article please contact us or get in touch via social media.