Peer critiques - some useful words

Tone and Wash a 2-stage exercise

Stage One" YELLOW

1. Choose a suitable image - one that has a good range of tone from lights to darks.

2. Draw the outlines of the major shapes in your image. I have used here a yellow ochre watercolour pencil. This means the lines will partially dissolve as you add the washes.

3. Choose the following colours as your palette (do not add any others unless they are from the yellow/brown family): lemon yellow, yellow ochre, cadmium yellow, burnt umber or burnt sienna.

4. Try to start by working with 3 simple levels of tone: light, middle, dark. Add the washes with a small long round brush, size 7 is good. Apply the lightest tones first in washes using the lemon yellow. The brush will be quite wet and there will be only small amounts of paint in the mix. Build the washes up slowly taking care to not get the paper too soaked. Lift excess water with a tissue or cotton wool to stop the paper buckling. 

5. When the lighter washes are done, add mid tones with a little less water in the brush using the cadmium yellow and the yellow ochre. Lift off excess paint/water as above.

6. Finally add the darkest tone with uburnt umber or sienna, use washes for the larger areas and pure paint (very little water) to add the details and the very darkest small areas.

7. Adjust as necessary to ensure the range of tones is broadly similar to your source image e.g. photograph. 

Stage Two: BLUE

This stage sees the addition of a second family of colours. The blue family (in this case cerulean blue, phthalo blue, and ultramarine blue) are added in transparent washes on top of the yellow/brown washes from part one (see that resource page for detailed guidance on how to apply the paint). Alizarin Crimson is also added for a final "lift" to the palette. The effect will be something like this: