Rocks abounding

Time to attack the rocks in the foreground …

The thing to remember here is that it’s not a heap  of rocks, but just one, sea-worn  rock, so never, in the search for detail, lose sight of  that homogeneity.   With this in mind, I began by ghosting in the dark shape, using deep blues and purples. Looking at it now, I think I should have included dark greens in there as well.  This would have aided the overall colour balance of the painting.

Then I began to introduce the details, working across the image.  first the strong darks to give shape and strength, then the little lights that contrast and point up the folds and ridges. The rocks are backed on the landward side by reddish sand – I missed out the grassy stretch right at the front as being irrelevant  – but when I put that in, and stood back, I found that it upset the whole picture.  Dark green rode to the rescue.  By overlaying but not entirely obscuring the sandy colour,  I achieved another texture and melded the sand into the whole painting.  Defining the rocks also included more detailing on the rough water just above them. The more you look, the more you see.

As you can see, in concentrating on the rocky detail,  I have also achieved the semblance of a rocky sea travelling at right angles to the waves!  All is not lost. I need to draw together the tones over most of the surface so that there is less contrast, while not losing the little interesting details.  I reckon that there is another four to six hours bliss working over the whole painting before reluctantly agreeing with it that it is finished.  I find the end  arrives quite suddenly, but it always the painting that tells me it is so.

3 thoughts on “Rocks abounding”

  1. Exhilerating! Removal of the grass foreground brings you deeper into the scene; instead of just looking at a spectacular view from a safe distance you are now in danger of getting seriously wet. It is strange how the eyes/brain can re-interpret; closer examination shows there is no rocky wave because the meaning of the detail becomes clear, such as the remains of the foam defining the cracks and folds in the wet rock.

  2. I have not finished my rocks yet but was grateful for the tip they are one big rock which has been worn away by the sea and not individual ones also the inclusion of some sea green. I need the righthand side corner to look flatter but will work on it. Like you, I love pastels.

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