Collection Painting


This assignment required a collection painting, A1 or A2 in size on a black or dark coloured background. I struggled to decide on what to present for this collection painting, and first toyed with depicting the contents of my handbag, and instead of arranging the collection before photographing I would just tip the handbag upside down and work on however the objects fell. However after a few attempts the resulting images just didn’t look appealing to me. I did however enjoy painting the collection of utensils from Painting on a painted surface so thought I would return back to the kitchen! I particularly enjoyed the bright bold colours in some of the kitchen utensils and settled on this selection of fruit and vegetables, which has a huge range of colour. I also tried to shine a dramatic light on the collection as directed in the assignment criteria but found this didn’t result in a very striking image. Instead, as it was midday and extremely sunny I photographed the collection outside which meant that some of the items have a particular light and shine on their surface as well as strong contrast and shadow.

I struggled to locate watercolour paper A1 in size so had to use A2. Due to my previously failed attempt at using masking tape to create a border and fix the paper to a surface in Painting on a painted surface I decided to paint the background free hand by using a mix of black ink and white acrylic paint. I then sketched the collection depicting areas for shadow and other details. Once the collection was mapped out on the background I set about adding in the darkest points of the shadows behind the fruit and vegetables. Once this was situated I then started building layers using slightly watered down white acrylic paint. I used this method in my previous collection painting and found it worked well. By building layers of white acrylic paint on the lightest points I was able to start creating light and shadow before adding colour and detail.

I’m happy with the overall image and feel it bears a resemblance to the original image. I’m particularly pleased with the apple and the orange in the foreground. I thought it would be particularly difficult to depict the apple due to the array of colours found on its surface, but by building in different layers of colour, and really trying to look at what I was painting I think it was quite successful. As with the orange, I added a wash of yellow acrylic paint to finish the image, which really contributes to the vibrancy of the orange, kissed by the midday sun. I’m not particular pleased with the outcome of the orange pepper or the cauliflower. The original sketch of the orange pepper I think was a little off and so when I was attempting to paint in the light and shadow I found it particularly difficult. The original cauliflower is also incredible detailed with the many ridges and florets, and without a very thin paint brush I felt inept at being able to truly depict the detail. If I were to invest in some more paint brushes and also spend some more time on this painting I would like to add in the true detail of the cauliflower, attempt to re-work the orange pepper and also add in the detail of the orange’s puckered surface.

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