I’ve been working very meticulously on this piece as it is very difficult with some advanced textures. The hat for example, all those small basket weaves and variations of tints and the cast iron bench with wood slats. These take time and many layers to achieve the right look and I will go back again and again to get it just right. Achieving accurate texture for a given area is so important for creating realism because if it doesn’t look real then it’s just another pretty picture, so I hope you’ll have the patience to stay with me on this one. I’ve completed the flowers and leaves and begun the work on the bench and some of the background. I bounce around a bit to assist me in achieving the correct values, another crucial step in creating realistic work. For the cast iron bench I began experimenting with different colors and found that with many layers of squiggles using FC Cool Grays, Prisma Periwinkle and Slate Gray I’m able to achieve to color I want. By working in a squiggle motion, I’m purposely leaving out random areas of the white of the paper. Once I have the depth of color and the values I want, I can go in and darken areas that need darkening and if I need more random lines/spots of the white I can go in and erase with my battery-operated eraser. It doesn’t matter if I remove too much pencil as I can now go and fill in randomly, getting the spots as teeny as I need them. Once it looks more or less the way I want it I will go over the spots with slate gray and/or periwinkle to subdue them so they don’t look like polka dots. As for the area of bushes behind the bench, I have gone in with a number of greens and randomly drew in some leaf shapes. From there I started filling in the background using FC Chrome Oxide Green, Black, dark brown and varied greens working the negative space to pull out some very subdued leaf shapes. The background is very much soft focused but there will still be the suggestion of bushes with a few leaves and branches here and there to suggest the realism. If you’re following along and have any questions please feel free to send me an email and like my page.