Dark and bright

Six bouquets from Ferme Tournesol and one to come in late September. I’m so happy I’ve been home this summer to enjoy them, and to paint them! Of the six, this was the hardest to paint because of all the darks. Of course I could have simplified the bouquet by removing the dark red Celosia in the back, but part of the challenge of painting these is trying to include everything they give me. (To be totally honest, though, I did add a few yellow flowers of my own, but I made no subtractions.)

My recipe for the darks in this is simple: Permanent Alizarin Crimson and Phthalo Green. You have to be careful when you combine these because if you use too much of the green, it’s quite awful, but mixed with the right amount of red, it’s almost black, and it works most effectively as a contrast to the yellow. (See why I needed them in here?)

19 Comments on “Dark and bright”

  1. So much to see. Just beautiful!


  2. Tami says:

    Just beautiful, Shari! Makes me think of a question I had for you regarding painting water, specifically in glass, like a vase such as this. Reflections and what looks like a magnifying glass look results. Is there any plan to have a video on just something like this? It looks tricky bit you make it look simple! Thanks!


  3. Jeff Gold says:

    Stunning! Beautiful contrasts of color and I love the way it fills and goes off of the page.


  4. Chris Rusk says:

    So rich and beautiful.


  5. Laurel says:

    I just love the way you paint the vase in all of these. Looking forward to a video.


  6. Bernadette says:

    Love the contrasting colors! I especially like the reds at the bottom of the vase.
    Exceptionally done!


  7. Peri Nilan says:

    Quite lovely Shari. I have a similar bouquet on my kitchen table which I thought I might try, so this is a great example. Thanks for the tip on making the darks with Phthalo Green and Permanent Alizarin. I’ll give that a try!


  8. murraylh says:

    Very nice! And I see that the addition of the yellow flowers really gave it a pop.Sent via the Samsung Galaxy S9, an AT&T 5G Evolution capable smartphone


  9. Linda Murray says:

    Oh my! Just beautiful. The fullness of the bouquet, and the different varieties of “greenery” that you captured is so lovely.


  10. Kristiina Sakai says:

    Shari, I look at all your sketches every day (for the last,maybe, 7 years). I’m not sure I have ever commented on them (maybe a couple of times) but this morning I find compelled to do so; You are so very good at what you do! It is amazing! I adore the way you manage to make a most ordinary thing (the old wheel barrow) interesting and beautiful, and how you are able to organize most complex matters, like these flowers and the boat scenes with numerous masts and lines, into pleasing and harmonious paintings. Just wonderful! I understand you have gotten to be a master at your craft by “showing up” daily. Thank you for that and I will keep enjoying your art daily. I also read all your comments. By the way, my own work in acrylics is quite different, larger and a wide range from realistic to quite abstracted.


  11. Tracy says:

    This is my favorite painting of her arrangements this year. I like how the dark area makes the lighter colors pop. And thank you formthe new class on painting these! I just zoomed into Teachable to sign up when I got that email!


  12. joantav says:

    Beautiful! I love how your darks make the flowers pop!


  13. Nice paintings, the dark purples and yellow flowers really pop.


  14. Beautiful centerpiece! The colors are varied and amazing.


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