Sunday, November 5, 2017

Negative Poppy Painting

Here is the next poppy project that I came up with, a negative poppy painting.

Negative painting is a hard skill to grasp so I love that this project gives students more practice at it.


- watercolour or heavy painting paper
- masking tape
- watercolour or disk tempera paint
- sea salt
- pencil
- black acrylic paint


I start by taping off my watercolour paper to my art board.

This will give me that nice finished edge.

Using reds, orange, yellow and a little purple and blue I paint the paper. I am using a lot of water to make the paint flow.  The purple and blue are mixed with the red before dropping onto the paper to create the dark reds.

I also scatter some sea salt onto the paint at the end before the paint dries.
Set painting aside to dry.

When painting is dry brush off the salt.  You can see the effect you get in this picture.

Now I need to decide where my poppy flowers will be.  I look at the paint and choose my favourite spots, places where the colours are rich and where the salt has created amazing effects.

I draw the outline of my flowers in these places including the stems and a few leaves.

Taking black acrylic paint I begin to paint around the flowers following my pencil lines.

I paint the spaces inside between the flowers using a smaller brush.

When I have painted all the negative space black I leave my painting to dry.

When it has dried I remove the tape. The last thing I do and this is optional as the painting is pretty awesome as it is right now, I paint in a few shadows with a mix of watery blue and black.  I use a small brush again and I'm very selective where I'm adding this.

That's it.

I love the way it turned out.