Friday, August 15, 2008

56 Chevy

This painting came out of a work-in-progress I presented on Wet Canvas:

I was asked to show how I painted chrome. I wasn't sure there was a real technique for painting chrome; but I explained what I did when painting chrome which was basically "paint what I see." You can see a video of the work in progress here:

Step by step, I started with the bumper and painting the lightest values (blue and light green) leaving some areas white. After the lightest values were added, I went to the darks which are basically the black and dark brown colors. This really sets off the contrast and shows how things are going to look when finished. After the darks are painted, it is adding the middle values and some detail.
I read recently in a painting "how-to" book about perfect and imperfect reflections. Imperfect reflections, like on water, have a local color (the water) and are muted. Perfect reflections, like on chrome or a mirror, have no local color so reflect back the exact colors. In this painting the chrome reflects the ground, buildings and sky/clouds.
The part of this painting I like best is the grey metal engine parts above the chrome grill.