Wednesday, March 03, 2010

4Seeds-Picking Colors

I am plotting out the steps of my collage making with illustrating the "Four Seeds" so much of what I have beeen doing has been for others and can't share it til it gets published- so in this lull- I can post the progression of this illustration since it is for Spec.
Went to the Quilt Shop yesterday, always fun and picked out the fabric. I usually do that for any big piece, which also adds to my fabric stores- something I love to do with little excuse.
The layout is actually purposeful- if you look at the line drawing above- the fabric is layed out in place- I'm trying to get a feel for the over all color sheme.
The nature of a wheat field, somewhat dictates a "warm" color scheme and the green and purple for the thistles are a bit too cool- meaning the both have more blue in them-cold- then the other color- the purple should lean more towards red on the color wheel and the green should lean more towards yellow-.
I thought that might be the problem in the Quilt Shop- but loved the fabric- I know I have purples and greens that will work better.
Contrast is also importatnt- do the colors pop out from what is around them? The greenish blue square at the top- will be the mans shirt and it is not enough of a contrast to the blue sky behind- or is dark blue jeans- think I will switch to white for the shirt-maybe one with some kind of a sutle stripe in it- light/dark contrast  opposite colors on the color wheel- red/green orange/blue etc. and different textures can contrast. Best way to test contrast is to squint- which takes most of the color away and leaves the value. Value is way more important than color- you can have fun with color as long as the value is right.
I use to be horrid at color- went to a SCBWI conference and was told in a portfolio review by a "Caldacott Winner" that I need to work on my color- I would of appreciated if he had given me some sort of lesson-like I just gave- but instead went on for 5 minutes on how wonderful the portfolio next to me was. So I took a workshop on Color theory- with a weavers group I was involved with - wish I could remember her name- because the teacher was wonderful and taught us all about color with collaging magazine clippings and Sculty clay- that we would systematically cut- and make our own color wheel-light bulb went off!


  1. I love hearing about this process--I'm especially interested (out of nerdy curiosity) to see the ways that you work on the finished version, and how the final image compares with your initial sketch!

  2. Ok, so I squinted my eyes and you are totally right (of course) the mans shirt completely vanished! I feel I understand far more about colour now, and I can't wait to see the finished piece.