For me there’s a unique beauty to be found in the weathered textures, colors and shapes of that rusting hulk on the back lot. There’s also a quiety dignity and a touch of mystery in their unknown history.
Creating an exact representation of the subject is of no interest to me—it’s only a starting point. I’m happy to simplify, modify, add or eliminate shapes if it improves the composition.
Some good colors for creating weathered metal are manganese blue, raw umber and cobalt green. One of my favorite color combinations involves cerulean blue—a sedimentary color—and brown madder. These colors combine to produce a very cold metallic feel.
When I reach the point that I feel the painting is finished, I set it aside for a few days, then go back and look at it again. I’ll also look at it upside down and on its side. There are usually a few final adjustments to be made. Only after it has passed this final test is it ready to go out and meet the world.
Catherine Anderson is a signature member of the National Watercolor Society, Watercolor West and the Rocky Mountain National Watermedia Society. Visit her Web site at www.catherineanderson.net.