|St Peter's For Bob|
Two-Layer Geometric Sketch
Watercolour On Paper
26cm x 18cm (10" x 7")
The two-layer geometric sketch is the second “exercise” in Watercolor Painting by Tom Hoffmann. It is another study that helps to reveal how much detail is needed in a painting. The five-value monochrome study explored the importance of tone. The two-layer geometric sketch introduces colour in a simplified form, so we can evaluate where more detail is needed.
The instructions for the exercise are to simplify each of the major shapes into a basic geometric form and assign it a colour. Paint each shape with a simple wash representing its lightest value and add a second layer where needed - primarily to indicate shadows.
Tom suggests using a limited palette of 3 colours – a red, a yellow and a blue. You can mix them, to create a green or purple, but if they don’t make a good green or a good purple, too bad. The intention is to ignore details and to treat colour simply. The result is supposed to look like a collage made from coloured paper.
I used the same subject as for the five-value monochrome study. Once again I failed to simplify things as much as Tom suggested - I did not reduce the subject to simple geometric shapes because the drawing is one of the challenges I’m trying to sort out.
The exercise helped to clarify some problems in the composition, but it also reassured me that my objectives for the painting are possible. I want the church and memorial to appear imposing, but the overall atmosphere to be positive and full of light.
I can see the background buildings and the church porch do not require much detail, but the foliage, even in the background, will need more texture. The church and the monument needed to be taller and darker.
My next steps are to finalise the drawing and use some thumbnail sketches to explore options for colours.