I have continued working with Jacqueline Gnott's DVD on painting a peony. After the dark background, I have tackled the leaves on the right-hand side of the painting.
I have just realized that I have never painted leaves before - flowers and petals, yes; leaves, never! Therefore, I tell myself that this first try did not turn out too badly. My first mistake though was in misinterpreting the drawing when I used the liquid masking: I painted background in a few places where a leaf should have been, and I completely misinterpreted the lines that represented a large stem. Ah., well! It is still somewhat believable.
I also lost a lot of the highlights that Jacqueline kept. I probably went much too dark on certain leaves. Jacqueline achieved her darks in about 2 or 3 layers max....I must have at least 5 layers in certain areas. The pink on the bud is also too pink; I will go back and put in some magenta to darken it a bit.
Added Monday, 1200pm:
On my monitor at work, I have just noticed that the image is too bright - in real life, the green in the background hardly shows and the leaves are more subdued. On my monitor right now, the painting looks really ugly while I like it in real life.