I have always been a fan of art with an underpainting. I think that it makes everything look better, and I think that is why I love so many of the Canadian paintings that my husband and I have collected over the years. Nothing makes a sky and water look better than a touch of orange showing through.
In doing a little on-line research into underpainting, it turns out that it isn't a painting style that is restricted to impressionist work, although that's where I love it, but to still life painting, and portraits - virtually every kind of art. Virtually every medium as well, including pastels and pencil crayons. And several of the software programs for use with photography also have an "underpainting" tool to help give a painterly quality to a photo.
I was reminded of how much I like it a couple of weeks ago at the Muskoka Arts and Crafts Show in Bracebridge. I met a new artist whose work I really enjoyed. Here is one of his paintings.
In addition to doing an underpainting, he told me that he paints on plywood because he loves the texture that it gives. And he also discovered some art markers that let him outline his shapes before painting them.
When I got home, I took out a little Martina Lesar mat that I have been working on and decided to see if I could simulate an underpainting on it. As you can see from the subject matter, it's the perfect little piece on which to experiment.
I am introducing a burnt orange yarn into the already-hooked shapes as well as the to-be-hooked shapes. And I think it will create the effect that I am going for. And it's a good exercise to try something about which I have been curious to see if it will emulate the underpaintings of the artists I so admire.
I'll share photos as this progresses, but thought there was enough here to demonstrate where I'm headed.