I’ve taken my grayscale study seriously, and I’m doing one other thing to increase efficiency: painting six at a time. Not that I’m trying to break any records here, it’s a great way to keep consistancy in a series if you keep them all at the same stage at the same time. I have six paintings designed, six grayscale studies done, and now I’m painting all six. Right now I’m in grisaille phase. Or to be precise, Gray Phase. Something like a Screech owl, but messier, I think.
With the grayscale studies done it’s a simple matter to duplicate the effect in acrylic, and that’s how I spent my day, with a mix of Ultramarine and Burnt Umber giving me my shading and tone, deepening to black where I wanted it. And it was very, very efficient. I even got outside a couple of times and hunted down a few birds with my binoculars. There’s some sort of migration going on out there. I even found a female Blackpoll warbler hunting caterpillars in the post oak next to the house. And two Yellow-billed cuckoos, a fabulous Painted bunting and to top it off, a pair of Bluegray gnatcatchers building a nest, what looked like a knot on a branch made of lichen. The two of them were taking turns pushing their bodies into the cup to make it even deeper and more perfectly shaped. It was lovely and reminded me I have to spend more time with my subject matter, wherever it might be.