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  • Writer's pictureDale Jackson

Painting Sky and Clouds

Fast forward from February when I was starting to work on this large painting, I wanted to share my work on the clouds. I didn't record all the progress the entire way, but rather, I just photographed my process at a few points and recorded a tiny portion of my work at creating the sky and then in another video, putting some light onto some of the clouds (videos below).

Before I really attempted my hand at the large painting, I first produced a small oil study of some clouds to practice for the big piece. I find studies like this are very important for me to practice on as I head into a more complex and bigger painting.

I decided to I wanted to paint large white cumulus clouds on a vivid blue sky. I wanted to capture the beauty of large cumulus clouds lazily drifting across the sky as the waves crash on the shoreline. I also wanted the sun to be seen behind and just above, off of the painting, but illuminating the clouds from above, giving them their "silver lining."

Here's a video of me laying down the gradient and then working to build up the structure of these clouds.

After the gradient of the sky has been put down and while it is still wet, I begin to lay in some of the cloud structures.

For this part of the painting, I'm using combinations of Cerulean Blue, Titanium White, Cobalt Blue, Dioxazine Purple, and Ivory Black.

Using a number 2 brush! Thanks Bob Ross! :) I used this brush to create the blue to light blue gradient of the background sky.

My messy palette!

Creating the cloud masses which fade away in the distance

Painting the upper parts of the cumulonimbus as the anvil starts to form at the top, fanning out as it's reaching to upper limits of the troposphere.

Here is a video of my progress on some of the cloud details.

High winds aloft are moving the large clouds

Accentuating the clouds with sunlight

I loved how these clouds were forming with the paint!

Cloudscape is done!! (for the most part)

Stay tuned for more updates on this large painting!

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