Missy Barrett's Adventures

The amazing adventures of a fictional child

Underpainting and Overpainting

I’ve been checking on my big brother Josh all day because he’s been working on this painting and I’m starting to really, really, really like it. When he started it this morning, I wasn’t sure I was going to like what he was doing mostly because he painted the whole white canvas totally and completely midnight black. Like, who does that?  Why not just buy a totally black canvas already because I know they have them because they sell them at craft stores and art stores and other stores like WalMart.

Anyway, when I checked back on what he was doing in the middle of the morning, the black paint was all dry and he was splotching the canvas with a sponge that had white paint on it, and he was splotching that white paint on top of the black.  That made even less sense to me because who paints a whole white canvas midnight black and then makes most of it white again?

When mom sent me upstairs to get Josh for lunch, I totally didn’t get what was going on because he was adding fat black lines and fat grey lines and fat white lines. So talk about doing something weirdy weird, right?   It didn’t even look like anything that made sense to me unless he was doing one of those geometric shape paintings my teacher at school had everyone in my class do that one time in art class.  But that didn’t make too much sense because when we did it at school, we got to use lots and lots of colors, and we got told not to make all the lines that cross over other lines a different color.  That meant no two lines could be the same color if they crisscrossed each other.

After lunch, Josh went back to his room to work some more on his art.  He started making lots and lots of teeny weeny lines with one of his crazy skinny liner brushes. Teeny weeny black lines on fat black lines and teeny weeny white lines on fat white lines and teeny weeny grey lines on fat grey lines.

And that”s when I got what he was doing.

He was painting a forest scene except it was just in black and white and grey.  I thought maybe it was a winter forest scene except there were plants and leaves showing, so it had to be a not-winter scene.

I asked Josh why he wasn’t putting any color in the painting and he said he was going to do that later. Right now, he was doing underpainting.  I never heard of that before so I asked Josh to tell me how come he underpainted first and when he was going to overpaint with the colors.

He said that underpainting is one way for artists to see how other layers of paint are going to look on a painting. He said they get done in monochromatic colors. Sometimes it’s shades of grey (black, white, grey) like he was doing, and sometimes it’s shades of brown (sepia tone is what it’s called on a camera setting), and sometimes it’s in other colors. It just depends on what’s getting painted.

He said it’s not just a art thing.  It’s a science thing, too, because doing painting with underpainting and overpainting teaches the person doing the painting a lot about nature, and nature is scientific.

Josh asked me where I heard the word overpaint and I told him I just made it up mostly because if you can underpaint, I figured you can probably also overpaint, and then he laughed. He said overpainting is already a word and it goes with underpainting. So I had to find out what overpainting was so I wouldn’t make a mistake if I had to explain to mom what he was doing in his room today.

Anyway, after the underpainting part of some artwork is done, that’s when the overpainting starts and that means adding not monochromatic colors only. It means you get to add all the other colors that are supposed to be in that painting. That’s when the greens and blues and yellows and reds and stuff get added, and plus, that’s when the detailing starts to get done like making bark on trees look more like bark so you know for sure it’s a tree.

So this is what Josh’s painting is looking like right now. It’s just the underpainting part right now. Tomorrow, if Josh’s painting is done, I’m going to edit this blog entry and show everyone what his painting looks like with all the overpainting done.

P.S.  I’m one day late with my blog entry because I thought yesterday was Tuesday except it was Wednesday so I apologize for being a whole day late but it’s a good thing I am because I got to talk about the painting Josh is working on so this was a superly fun blog entry to write.

Leave a comment »

Festive Fun For Friends And Family

Everyone that knows me knows I really really really love fireworks.  Mostly I love watching them but I also love going with my family members to the fireworks tents to see what’s new and what’s back.  Last week when I was at the fireworks tent with my brother Aaron, James and Missy at Parker Fireworks showed me the newest firework they got this year, and it’s a unicorn firework.

My brother Aaron went back a few days later and he got a superly fantastic assortment of fireworks to set off to celebrate Independence Day and plus Canada Day.  This is what he bought!

Mostly he says we’re going to be setting off the sparkly fireworks and not so much the noisy ones, and that’s okay by me because I like what fireworks look like way more than what fireworks sound like and plus, fireworks are mostly about the sparkly part because that’s the best part of fireworks.

My mom and my brother Aaron are going to do all the setting off of fireworks because that’s a job for grown-ups and brothers over the age of 18.  Josh and me, we’re going to kick back and enjoy the show.

Also, today is Canada Day so I want to wish all my Canadian friends a very happy Canada Day.  I’ll be back on Saturday to wish all my American friends a very happy 4th of July Independence Day.

Leave a comment »

%d bloggers like this: