Back to my normal palette of colors for now.
I started two 24" x 30" canvases this weekend. For this painting I thought that a neutral gray toned canvas would work best.
I took all my leftover paint from the first start, added a little more red and yellow to get it warmer, thinned it a little, and toned this canvas.
Another great way to get this neutral toned canvas is to have a failed painting attempt and wipe it down.
The toned canvas was my mid tone. I started painting with my lightest lights, an off white on the warm side. I worked the negative space around the figures legs to get them positioned. The highlights on the hat and the scarves are enough to get the image to read. Then I sketched in a few lines and shapes of a darker tone. There you go, my main value pattern with a light, mid tone and dark.
I did not want to get into too much detail too soon. I am just putting down value notes and adjusting my drawing with paint as I go, working all over the canvas to avoid getting bogged down with the details. I pull the big shapes out first, trying to capture the gestures of the figures. This needs to be accurate before I can start to finish with details. I need to have the framework down so I can lay the details in with confidence in the right spot and leave them.
I continue to make slight value adjustments and begin adding more color. I make some adjustments to the gestures of the figures. I moved the arm up on the woman in the middle. I also moved the right shoulder of woman on the left just a bit to make her look like she is carrying a heavier load in that bag. I have not put the highlight back on there yet.
This is where I had to stop. I hope to wrap this one up before long and post the results.