Painting on a painted surface

For this exercise I was tasked with painting collections on painted surfaces. I decided to depict an assortment of kitchen utensils on a black background, as well as a collection of books on an imagined mint background, and cutlery on an imagined lilac background.

I started out by using masking tape to fix the A4 watercolour paper to my work surface and then painted in the background. Unfortunately the masking tape wasn’t very effective as you can see, these aren’t the neat edges I originally wanted!

Painting the above collection of books was particularly challenging due to the high level of detail on the book covers. There is only a slight shadow from the edges of the books so most of my time was spent trying to represent a true likeness of the book covers. For some of the larger font I did attempt to paint them in directly, however for the smaller lettering I only provided an indication of the text. I’m happy with the overall image, although find the background a little too bright, I think it would be more effective if it was a slightly more muted mint green.

This next collection is an assortment of various utensils from a kitchen drawer. I really like the different colours, shapes and shadows, the items are almost luminous on the black background.

I used black ink for the background of this painting, and sketched out the composition before painting. This took a few attempts as there are so many items I initially struggled to get the sizing right and fit them all onto the page. Before adding in any colour I used a slightly watered down acrylic white paint to add in the shapes, building up the white acrylic paint for bolder colour. I then painted over each item injecting colour, and then adding in light and shadow.

For the final composition I used a selection of cutlery. To add more interest to this piece, the cutlery at home is quite a mix and not all uniform so you can see in the arrangement there is slightly different detail in each item. I purposefully laid out the cutlery in this geometric patter, to accentuate the fine lines and shapes.

Out if the three compositions this is my favourite. I particularly like the lilac painted background underneath the metallic cutlery. I also enjoyed painting just using black and white acrylic and working hard to add in the light and shadow. I decide to use a deeper purple to depict the shadow underneath the cutlery, which I think works well.

3 thoughts on “Painting on a painted surface

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