Working From a Photo – White Flowering Tree Buds

Flower Plum Tree Buds

Spring isn’t sprung yet in my neighborhood, but one year I photographed buds plucked from a flowering tree in my yard and today I chose to paint from it

My original photograph
My original photograph
Underpainting and beginning to add details
Underpainting and beginning to add detals
Digitally manipulated photo on right and finished piece on left
Digitally manipulated photo on right and finished piece on left

I found it helpful to digitally manipulate the photo in iPhoto – changing the shadows, the saturation, and so on, so it was more imagistic, and then I transferred a pencil sketch onto stretched 140 lb. paper and proceeded to lay down light washes and load the paper with color. I don’t like working from photographs, but this proved to be challenging and immensely satisfying as I built up the transparent layers. My photograph, my digital manipulation, my use of color. It’s all good. It’s mine.

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