Our goal today in the figure painting class was to achieve harmony by painting with a dominant color and, if necessary, small amounts of the colors adjacent to it on the color wheel. This was an awesome assignment because it made me think about color.
Our two models were seated back to back, like strangers in a restaurant or on a train. Their body language suggested that they were not together. Both models’ bodies were relaxed, their expressions were pleasant, and their gazes disinterested.
I chose purple for the dominant color, thinking it would communicate the detachment between the two people. I used a bit of blue on the man and got to the point where I needed to paint the background. I began with a bit of purple along the left side. In hindsight, it probably would have been best to leave the background mostly purple, but I added red and the next thing I knew, the red was competing with the purple for dominance. I even added it to the man’s shirt. The focal point on the woman’s face was lost in all the red so I used a water-soluble pencil to strengthen lines on her face and between the two figures.
This is a pencil and watercolor sketch.