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applying reflected light to complex forms.

by JuliannaKunstler.com

As light bounces off the objects - it molds them by creating lights and shadows.

Value is the amount of light reflected from a surface.

As light shines on objects - it generates lights and shadows.

Value creates depth within an artwork - making objects look three dimensional , appear closer or further away.

It does this by creating a range of tones within an object and its background.

Different sides of an object cannot have the same value if they are not facing the same direction.

Use reference photos to shade the forms using Chiaroscuro pattern.

Pay attention to the use of reflected light to add an illusion of air and light in a picture.

Emphasize foreground corners and edges by creating (exaggerating) a strong contrast.

Tone down the contrast in the background to make it appear further away.

Don't forget to shade background!



Every artist will find the shading method that works best for them. Each method produces a distinct result and depending on what type of art you want to create - you chose the one that is appropriate for the task.

When you think about it - the order of tonal values is very logical. It is based on how much light the surface gets.
One side, that is exposed to light - receives more light - it’s the light side
The opposite side - is a dark side - it does not receive any direct light from the source.
Always keep values on the light side lighter than values on the dark side.
A cast shadow is created when the light source is obstructed by the object.

Emphasize contrast next to the corners.

We see these areas lighter or darker based on what value is next to it.

Same grey will look lighter vs black background comparing to the same grey placed vs white background.

Pay attention to the areas that will receive bounced light from other surfaces and sides.

Start with the darkest sides / areas.

Emphasize corners for a good edge appearance.

Soften contrasts if you want to show object's roundness / softness.