Here’s a little something to go with your brussels sprouts this holiday…
Draw a grid, 5 squares by 2, as lightly as you can with an HB pencil. The head of the goose occupies 6 squares and the beak, 3. Getting the position of the eye just right is very important, so I practised my moves on scrap paper first. Note also that most of my lines are straight; they’re easier to draw than curves.
With a soft brush, apply a thin glaze of Viridian or Phthalo Green over the background, the shadows on the goose and the bottom of its bill, but NOT the top. If you can’t see the paper and the pencil through the paint, it’s probably too dark!
When your paper is bone dry, cover the Viridian with an equally thin glaze of Alizarin Crimson, but this time, include the top of the bill. What you’re aiming for at this point is a neutral grey, so don’t worry if your picture looks a little drab; we’re going to wake it up with some yellow, later!
Let your paper dry again and apply another glaze of Viridian to the background only.
The best way to approach this kind of work is to have a Christmas pudding or something else on the go at the same time because, once again, you have to let the painting dry thoroughly before you apply the next glaze to the background and the entire bill. I used Schmincke Translucent Yellow, which is about the same hue as Gamboge, half the price and nothing like as toxic.
For the darker details, I used a slightly thicker mix of the Alizarin and Viridian combined. I put a little more Alizarin and Trans Yellow on the beak and also washed off the eye and gave it a complete repaint as it didn’t look beady enough to me!
Wishing you a Happy Christmas and all the very best for 2016!