Last week I took a workshop on integrating figures with backgrounds. We used our personal photos as the reference and with watercolor on white paper. I learned a bit about the emotion of color and brushstrokes, but had trouble recognizing the finished products as something that genuinely reflected my own feelings about the subject.
Today I gave it another go with a photo I took at a wedding over the weekend. The photo shows an older woman clapping for the young couple. I was moved by the stark emotion of the woman and wanted to capture it. This time I worked with gouache on black paper and feel like it reflects what I noticed about the woman’s reaction.
Each of these paintings tells a story and the backgrounds contribute meaning. The last is my favorite because the colors are strong, the shapes are clear, and the brushstrokes are not fussy.
I especially like the colors and ambiance of the first painting. The intensity of the young couple and the way they are gazing at each other, makes me want to know more about them.
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