I had a couple of things to decide in this second stage. 1. I had to decide how to make sure the fish are a part of the background. I usually will soften or lose some of the edges in many areas so the fish do not look pasted on. I picked several areas and panted across the fish with glazes.
2. I had to decide the focal area, and not make all the fish have the same importance. By the way… before I ever started I had to make some design decisions. When I was designing the painting I drew out a rough value scale with the fish and the water just as blocks of light, medium and dark values. This is done very loose as once the water hits the paper it has a life of its own and I usually go with anything that happens outside of the main focal area. Before I started I had decided to make it a variation of a cruciform (cross) pattern. Thus I was always reminding myself to keep that very important element. I would darkening areas where it would strengthen the cross shape or pulling out paint where the cross needed to come forward. Of course the cross is in the fish, so when I say cross it means the cross shape of the piece. I hope this make sense, its a little after 6 am and I’ve been painting since 4:30 am.
An area, I feel is not working as well as it should is the red and black fish on the left…he is sort of stealing the show, he may get push back into the painting by reducing his chroma or brightness. I may glaze over him some green to not only reduce his brightness, but this may also push him back into the water a little more… we’ll see. The reason he is stealing the show is rather simple, he has lots of color, bright color and his pattern of color is placed in such a direct manner with many small brush strokes. All this movement combined with the contrast of his colors and values makes him really get noticed. also he is a bit animated… I may have to make him less cute.
Any comments are welcome , I understand critique and will not have my feelings hurt if you have some type of opinion which may help, let me know.