Today I selected a spot right next to the shoreline of the pond and decided to try to render and paint the cat tails and aome interesting trees that looked like lime-green cotton candy. I drew a simple line drawing and masked out the cat tails and the dead wood that I saw. I next rendered the dainty trees I wanted to feature as well as the tufts of foreground trees to either side of these.
I then ran a wash of the foreground pond reflections, painted the background trees wet-in-wet, dropping in salt as I went. Before I darkened the underside of the trees I masked some abstract marks in over the green washes where I painted in the deep darks. I painted in the light wash between the woods and foreground and placed the shadow I saw to the left. These were quick light washes.
I then concentrated on the bank and defined the reflections in the water. I had to mask the foliage reflections in the water. I realised I had used analagous colors of yellow, blue and green, predominantly. I chose a red (burnt sienna) to help define the far bank and enhance the darks. I chose this color because it went with what I was seeing on the bank and was a compliment to the greens. I then washed back over the reflections in the water. I then removed the masking and salt. All of the above work was done plein air or on-site. This took me about four hours.
To finish the painting, I handpainted, with a fine brush, the details of the cat tails, deadwood and tree trunks. I scratched out limbs on the dead wood with a pointed scratch tool. I darkened some of the trees in the background as well as fed some darks in and around the base of the cat tails and along the bank. I washed in some light washes of greens and burnt sienna and yellow over the foliage in the background darks.