Painting Cypress Tree Bark – The bark on the Cypress trees are painted their light and shadow colors with lots of yellow for the light and blue for the shade. My goal is to finish what is in the background first and work my way forward to the stuff that is in the foreground. Therefore anything that is close up, gets painted last. The Cypress trees being painted in this post are in what’s called “middle distance”. Not quite background and not quite foreground. Their colors need to make them stand out from the trees in the background but not be so bright that they look like they are close up. The trees, plants and wood stork in the foreground will have the brightest colors.
The two cypress trees that I painted in this post started with a base shadow color and a base light color. For each plant or species, I mix an overall base color. In other words, there is a base common denominator color that you should see in all the trees. Trees in the background will have very little of this color and more sky blue and white. Trees in the middle distance and foreground have more of this base color.
Mixing a base common denominator color helps save time when you begin to add the highlights and shadow. When I need to mix the shadow colors, I take the base color and add blue and black or blue and brown and this gives me a realistic looking shadow color. For the tree bark that’s in light, I take the base color, and add Permanent White and Yellow and now I have a realistic bark color that looks like it’s in the morning light.
In the next post, we’ll discuss the highlight colors for the shadow color…