Quick Sketch Of An Orange Day Lily

An easy lesson that explores a Secondary Triad Color Scheme.

Quick Sketches

It can be hard to define just what a sketch is. They can be very minimal and almost abstract, or developed to the point that they look like finished paintings. Most sketches are meant as explorations or studies with a focus on a particular subject, skill or concept.

Although they need not be ‘quick’, working quickly in watercolor almost certainly requires working wet-in-wet and with confidence. No matter the starting idea, working quickly also develops several other skills valuable when working in a medium, like watercolor, that requires both confidence and freedom.

The main idea for this sketch is to explore the Secondary Triad, but we’ll work on those other skills along the way.

Secondary Triad

The color scheme for this sketch is a Secondary Triad. The Secondary Triad is one centers around three colors – Orange, Green and Violet.  Basic Color Theory teaches that these colors are ‘secondary’ since they can be mixed with combinations of two Primary Colors.

The Secondary Triad is limited in that it does not provide a full range of color – there is no blue, yellow or red.  But, some of the intermediate mixtures are surprising and the over all color set is harmonius.

Color harmony is one of the most important reasons to use a limited palette like this one.  Another is that it forces the artist to consider other Characteristics of Color in developing the painting.

 

What you’ll need:

  • Brushes – Large, Medium and Small Rounds, Rigger
  • Colors – Cadmium Orange, Thalo or Dioxazine Violet, Thalo Green – or mixtures of two Primaries for each.
  • Watercolor paper –  cut to about 8″ x 10″ or so.

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The Secondary Triad is limited in that it does not provide a full range of color – there is no blue, yellow or red.  But, some of the intermediate mixtures are surprising and the over all color set is harmonius.

Color harmony is one of the most important reasons to use a limited palette like this one.  Another is that it forces the artist to consider other Characteristics of Color in developing the painting.

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