yellow parrot tulips…a painting process

step 1 - background

I originally bought the tulips in March 2010. I was thinking at that time that if I left the canvas white where the tulips would be, that they would glow better and the yellow would be truer.

step 2

When I decided to actually develop this painting last weekend, I decided that I would be able to have a looser approach if the whole background was filled in and I wouldn’t have to worry about white canvas peaking through where I didn’t want it to.

step 3

Then I needed to actually start painting the tulips. Fortunately I had taken photos of the original tulips to work from. It developed quite quickly but didn’t yet have the contrast I wanted.

step 4

At this point I darkened up some areas and added some highlights to increase contrast. (Unfortunately, the photo doesn’t show this very clearly)

final step

Here I laid in some thick layers of paint to given some texture on the petals and leaves and finally the signature!


A detail to show the texture. Since I have been finding it a bit of a challenge to stay loose when working on canvas (as opposed to paper) I am reasonably pleased with the results.

images (cc) 2011 Hilary Farmer