View Full Version : how can I improve the tree shadow ?

02-14-2007, 10:12 AM
I don't have much notion of light x shadow, but I invented a landspace with a tree just by memory. ( I hope it's not that bad :roll: )

Then I added a layer under the tree and used black with airbrush on places I felt like shadow. I'm not sure If I did it right along the tree parts, but for sure the root shadow is not right.

and what tool should I use? The less bad I found was the airbrush, cause the rest made the black look like wet with water mixed, and I wanted a pure black tone, to decrease opacity later. although the airbrush shadow didn't look right, either.

What could I do instead to have a better looking shadow for the tree ?


02-14-2007, 10:29 AM
Hi Yammy - I think that you will find that most artists never use black (at least in traditional paintings) because it is considered a 'dead' color. It has no life or character. The study of shadows can be quite complex, but the general theory is that they be 4 values darker than the lighted parts. (value is the relative lightness and darkness of a color using anywhere from 5 to ten different 'shades' of the same color). You would use the little vertical slider at the right of the color palette to change values. Color theory is quite complex also, but in general an outdoor scene will have shadows that are similar to the sky color. Usually blues and purples will give convincing shadows.
Hope that helps and doesn't add to confusion. Happy painting.

02-14-2007, 10:56 AM
hmm purple... I remember of that from some painting book I've read... You are right. black is bad color :)

And hmm Lets pick some purple then. How should I actually use in artrage to have the shadow effect? I'm not sure of the tool of even how to do it to make it look right. I tried. You saw. It's awfull :roll:


02-14-2007, 02:14 PM
Dear Yammy, i am a know-it-nothing when it comes to art, i like your tree painting the way it is, i think a shadow would be clutter, ,,,, but talking of shadows, sometimes i think a shadow depends on the color of light producing the shadow, and like Jvolkel said, the color of the sky,, there is snow on the ground here, in the morning the eastern sun casts deep blue shadows from the clear blue sky across the bare trees onto the white snow, in the afternoon, the western sun casts deep purple shadows this time of year, indoors it must be different, maybe artificial light casts a shadow similar to its tint, for instance, maybe a lamp that has a yellowish shade on it will cast a shadow of a person onto a blue rug and the shadow would have a dark greenish tint,,, could use some help here myself,,,,,there are some great artists in this forum, maybe they can do sort of a color wheel for us for shadow ,,, have a good time,,,

Stephen Lo Piano
03-10-2007, 09:44 PM
You may find this suggestion helpful.
Just below your horizon line the color red is layed out.
In the color wheel, red is a warm color, it does not work well with a landscape where you are trying to catch the feeling of cold and ice. Reds work better with a warm hot summer day. Interestingly enough you have blue underneath the red. Perhaps you deliberately put that color in the painting as a form of expression for a reason?

01-06-2008, 02:07 PM
im not an experienced artist so im just doing the best i can to help you.....the light source seems to be from the left so if it was me i would paint some darker brown on the right side of the tree and a bit darker again on the roots at the right........for the roots at the lefts put a lighter brown then the one who is already there and things would be better(if i understood your question like you meant).....please forgive my english, im from Canada,Quebec :lol: