I made this drawing of a clematis growing against a wall a few days ago and I’ve been dithering ever since. Sometimes a subject just doesn’t inspire and then I think of all sorts of things to do before starting. I’ve even been doing housework this morning so things must be bad!
Anyway, I’ve worked out my colours which are unusual this time. The reds of the wall and the stamens and stalks are complementary to the green leaves. There is no sunshine in my reference photo and perhaps that is why I’m not raring to go as sunshine and shadows really inspire. But there is contrast and I like the way I can make the painting have depth by making the leaves stand out against each other.
I liked doing the drawing too. I do start with a detailed drawing, but the first thing I do is ignore the lines when I put in the first wash when I drop colours in quite randomly but with a cunning underlying plan! . The lines only really become significant when I start outlining the flowers and leaves in order to get the depth and 3D effect I’m looking for. So the drawing doesn’t inhibit spontaneity at first but acts as a guide later on in the painting.
I’ve masked out the stamens but not the flowers as I will take care to not drop too much colour over them in the first wash. I will wet the whole of the paper as some colour in the white flowers is desirable for a natural effect. So here goes…