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Mountains and Mist with Baoxing Zhang - May 11th, 2013

Baoxing Zhang along with his students visited the Yellow Mountain region of China, famous for its unique mountains surrounded by mist. His workshop, which was inspired by the visit to China, showed artists two ways to paint mountains and mist.

Brushes are important and Baoxing Zhang mentioned three that are used in this kind of painting. The horse hair brush should be used for the rocky surface. He uses a mountain horse hair brush. A large wolf hair brush is used for the mist. The soft wolf hair applies the wet brush evenly. Baoxing Zhang also used a brush with hair from the ear of an ox. The effect is similar to the horse hair brush.

Baoxing Zhang began with a dry horse hair brush to create the rocky features of the Yellow Mountain.

Producing this craggy surface involved pushing the brush, which is a technique that creates a random effect similar to the roughness of a rock.

Before the mist could be applied with a very wet brush, it was critical to completely dry the ink used on the mountain.

Then the wet brush with some grey ink was applied with the wolf hair brush. The wet brush was pointed toward Baoxing Zhang.

Next some colour was added to the mountain as well as some blue colouring to the mist.

The mist emerged surrounding the mountain.

Baoxing Zhang also added distant mountains with a wet brush and grey ink.

The painting had used the dry and wet brush technique effectively. Baoxing Zhang set this painting aside to dry.

The next painting began similar to the first with a dry brush creating the mountains.

However, for the mist, Baoxing Zhang also used the dry brush.

He continued filling in the mist with the dry brush.

Baoxing Zhang then turned to the wet brush and coloured the mountains.

The effect showed mountains breaking through a mist.

The wet brush was then added over the mist that had been created earlier with the dry brush to blur the mist as it appears from a distance.

Baoxing Zhang then let that painting dry.

The first painting had dryed and Baoxing Zhang looked for a place to add something in the foreground.

Some pine trees were a striking addition to the work.

He continued working on the pine trees with a smaller brush.

In the mist, Baoxing added some birds to the composition.

Workshop participants tried their hand at both the wet and dry methods of painting mist and mountains. Baoxing Zhang came around to help.

Either method still required focusing on how to use the different types of brushes to get the effect desired as Baoxing Zhang had demonstrated.

This artist had started out right, creating the basic mountain shapes and rocky texture.

Baoxing Zhang helped define the mountains and terrain more precisely.

You can learn more about Baoxing Zhang in the links section. He has also written many books on painting that are listed in the books section.