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10PM, Aerin, 2019.

24"x36", acrylic on canvas.


Although I wasn't using the wash technique exclusively yet, I did develop that technique while making this painting. I'm sure I'm not the first person to use it, but I was never taught how to use it, I just started doing it on my own. I can't remember why I started using water to thin my paints, maybe someone else in the studio suggested it. However, once I started doing it, I was like, "Oh, this is great. I'm not doing anything else anymore."

A close up of an unfinished painting. The closeup shows blue snow on he ground, with the corner of something orange showing at the top of the image. There are two white unfinished areas. The snow has several footprints and tire tracks in it.
A closeup of an unfinished painting. There are brush marks that look like trees in the background. In the midground there are pine trees, they are black with stripes of blue which represent the snow on the branches. In the foreground there is the orange corner of an unfinished shack.

As this closeup shows, I also wasn't making trees in my signature blobs quite yet. The background, far away, trees are textural brush marks, which I don't use super often anymore. The closer trees are obviously similar to the trees I do now, though. They're just silhouettes, only defined by the snow on them. I still use that basic method, however, now I'll make the shapes a little more asymmetrical and random looking, as well as defining the shapes more clearly. These snow spots kind of just look like stripes, and I've strived to have my snow blobs look more like clumps nowadays. 

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This was the second painting I made for this series, it is based off of a memory but it is also very fantastical. On my commute to and from school in 2019 and 2020, there was a water tower that I could see through the trees in flashes. It doesn't look at all like this painting, but the image of a water tower in the woods was so interesting to me that I was inspired to make this piece.

A photo of an unfinished painting with a digital drawing on top of it. The painting is cut off, but the part that is in frame has blue snow on the ground, trees in the background, and two blank spaces of canvas. The digital drawing consists of mint green perspective grid lines on the ground.
A photograph of an unfinished painting with a digital drawing on top of it. The painting is cut off, but the part that is in frame shows a peachy sky, with a dark brown hill in front of it. In front of the hill is a line of trees with snow in their branches. The ground is covered in blue snow and tire tracks. In the foreground there is a digitally drawn on shack. The shack has orange walls and a blue roof. It is simple, and has no doors or windows.

I used digital studies to help me visualize the perspective of this piece. Since it was one of the earlier paintings I was still developing my sense of perspective. So I definitely needed the extra help that digital art afforded me. I also used the digital studies to figure out how to use the lighting, This piece is not lit the same way that the ones after it were. Rather than only using layers of thin wash, I used solid areas of color and then used the wash to blend it out.

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