This section is from the book "Arts & Crafts Magazine Vol1-2", by Hutchinson & Company.
The hydrangea and the guelder rose, like such other clustered small Bowers as the lilac we discussed last month, offer to the artist a class of problems different from that involved in the representation of double flowers like the rose, which we have just been considering, The guelder rose is the easiest to study of flowers of this sort. One reason is that the shape of the branches of blossoms is globular and regular; and another is that the individual blossoms are simple and flat. As the flower is somewhat out of season now, we will defer its pictorial presentation for another occasion, and return to the consideration of the hydrangea as represented in our last issue by Victor Dangon's beautiful drawing. The hydrangea is much like the guelder rose to paint, and is, perhaps, even a more agreeable subject, in regard to colour, on account of the gradual transition of its exquisite clusters from white or green to a delicate rosy pink or soft, pale blue.
The blossoms represented in Mr. Dangon's drawing are of the latter tint, the colour being largely qualified by the greys. At the edges of some of the petals a faint pinkish tone is seen. The leaves of this shrub are a rather dark, cool green, with stems of a lighter, warmer quality of colour. An effective background for such a study would be a tone of rich deep amber, almost brown in the darker shadows, but grey in quality throughout.
Begin by drawing carefully the general outlines with charcoal finely pointed. Put in the background first, using yellow ochre, white, a very little ivory black, burnt sienna, raw umber, and a little permanent blue, and for the deeper touches very little or no white, and more ivory black, burnt sienna, and permanent blue. In the lighter portions at the top add a little cadmium to the local tone and omit raw umber. The delicate blue of the hydrangeas is painted with permanent blue or cobalt, white, a little yellow ochre, a little madder lake, and a very little ivory black. In the shadows add raw umber and light red. In the deepest touches of shadow beneath the petals use burnt sienna, permanent blue, and ivory black. In the sharp, fine dark accents, not so deep as those just described, use madder lake and raw umber with a little permanent blue. Where the pinkish tones are seen on the edges of some of the petals use .1 little madder lake, white, cobalt, yellow ochre, and the merest suspicion of ivory black.
The green leaves are painted with Antwerp blue, white, cadmium, madder lake, and ivory black, with the addition of burnt sienna and raw umber in the shadows. When painting the stems add more cadmium and white, and substitute vermilion for madder lake. The stamens in the centre of the small flowers are painted with cadmium, white, vermilion, and a very little ivory black, with the addition of raw umber and madder lake in the deeper touches. Use medium and small flat bristle-brushes for the general work, and for small details in finishing use flat-pointed sables, Nos. 5 and 9.
China Painting: Decoration for a Rose Jar.