Horse VS Candy / oil

The horse won this standoff because I ate the candy.

The horse won this standoff because I ate the candy.

This is color theory experiment #3 on a violet ground, and using complimentary colors for my underpainting.

The scary part was the reflections. I had to fake it. I worked on this painting for weeks and had to do the reflections last. So I was nervous I might mess it up at the end after spending all that time on it. I just had to challenge myself and if it didn’t work out, try again.

horse vs candy, glazes

You can see the layers of paint stripped off all the way down to my underpainting in the photos below. And a photo of my actual still life.

This pic shows the candy dish underpainted in complimentary colors. The M&Ms I wanted to be orange are blue here, and the M’s I wanted to finish blue are orange here, etc. You can see the underpainting for the horse in this shot too. I wanted him to be a reddish brown, so I blocked in his shape with greeninsh black. Green and red being vs candy, more glazes

In this photo you can see the underpainting of the checkered tablecloth in green, because I wanted it to be red check. After I painted those diamonds in, I thought they should be on more of an angle. So when it was dry, I drew new lines on top of this with charcoal and painted my red checks on top.

This also shows my Begonia and background finished.

The flower pot is underpainted in a cool gray because I planned on using warm colors in the reflections.

horse vs candy underpainting

Here you see the underpainting of the Begonia in the complimentary colors of the leaves directly on the violet tint. And you can see the underpainted warm gray background, because I wanted the background to be cool gray when it was finished. Even gray has a complimentary gray. If you want your grays to vibrate, or if you want your grays to be pearly, this is the way to do it. Practice mixing warm and cool grays and use them on different background colors.still life set up

A lot of the violet lifted at this stage, even though it was dry to the touch.

It seems like the violet tint makes all the colors lift through the glazes more. I think I can see the violet right through 5 layers of glazes, but I’m not sure if other people see the violet tint in the finished painting.


Here’s a shot of my still life set up in my living room. (good thing I don’t paint from photos, cause this wouldn’t work hahahah)

That’s my cheat sheet tablecloth with the red checks. I wanted to do a red checkered tablecloth under my still life, but the fabric has small checks, and I wanted to make larger checks so it would be easier. Then I could see I needed the cheat sheet tablecloth because the curved pot makes the lines of the reflections curve too. I couldn’t imagine how to draw it without painting a section of it on a scrap board and putting it under the pot.