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<How to paint a landscape of Guilin?>

About Guilin-

There is a Chinese proverb saying that “ Guilin’s mountainous & river landscape are world renown “.(桂林山水甲天下)

Space and landscape-

This is a scenery from Guilin.

There are plenty of space between the mountains and the sea. Chinese art loves space. It gives us


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feeling of freedom from restriction.

Before we start a composition, we need imaginary horizontal and vertical lines as guide. This is one question to ask oneself before we begin a piece, that is, are what we are drawing matches the imaginary lines. The final result is a perfect balance. We should have done this for the peacock. Anyway we learn. Practise makes perfect.

We have a girl with two cormorants, two baskets of fishes on a raft. Background of mountains and foreground of the sea. In a little distance are isles painted in with shadows to show the waterways. Do not forget that all subjects in the foreground are always bigger. We may not see the effect whilst drawing. The effect is beautiful to behold with the shadows added in. Shape, size and tones are important.

How to paint cormorants(birds)?

Also, the two cormorants has different stance, one seems to be waiting for a reward of fishes and the other flapping its wings (like, we have done our share of work for the day, please release us!). These two cormorants lends liveliness to the scene.

How to paint the background?

Note the levels of height of mountains in the background. There are no uniform shapes or sizes. Only Indigo will be applied. Therefore one needs to observe the tones. Be aware that the sea is always level in pictures. So other objects follow suit to this fact.

How to do colouring?

The background of mountains have an interesting setting. It gives one an illusive feel. One can travel through the open waterways behind the isles to the mountains behind.

Bamboo raft: Note the green shades. Correct color and tones rules the subject. Note also the dip in between each bamboo piece. If this is not properly done, the raft will have an inward curve which is detrimental to its safety!

Fishing baskets: These are open baskets to store the fishes caught by the cormorants. Note the tones and shades of the baskets. They should be lighter in shade where the light falls on.

Fisher woman: Her blouse offers an interesting shade. She is facing the sunset, therefore her face is of a brighter red. So is part of her body. Her stance is interesting too. Well balanced in the legs.

Cormorants: Most of us drew the birds in form only, without details of feathers and wings. One must be observant. Though they are black, they can be shaded with tones.

Mountains: Give them a distant look by light shades. Foreground mountains should be darker. Sunset should be light, lending brightness with vermillion. The contrast is great.