What can I say, I like brightly colored things. Tropical fish are great subjects.
I am fortunate enough to be able to get my own photo reference images of numerous kinds of tropical fish with the permission of local sources.
I had two beautiful shots of these angelfish one of the black and silver and one of the gold. I adjusted their direction of movement and created a composite sketch of the two fish swimming past each other. The background was created with a few references, but was predominantly free handed.
For my tropical fish I like to use a method that combines traditional Chinese ink watercolor with western watercolor techniques. This creates a unique depth in the picture.
So from a value sketch you create a value painting with primary secondary and tertiary detail. The ink will show through the later added watercolor and even gouache so it makes a good framework for painting. Correct Value is two thirds of the battle in painting.
Road map coloration was added to 'AngelFish - 07/05'. This is very pale washes of watercolor to give some indication of what kind of colors are going to be needed in areas of major interest. From here we work the painting in normal western style, back to front and top to bottom. The finishing touches are the addition of small amounts of gouache watercolor to boost or highlight color in certain areas and to add any specialty paints such as metallics.
Metallic watercolor paints were sparsely blended on both angelfish.
Daniel comes from a line of craftsman artists and as a child he was exposed to a different kind of life. He lived in a rural area in upstate New York. With his father being a well known, and sought after, gunsmith specific to the making of muzzle loading barrels they attended a lot of rendezvous. As such, Daniel was exposed to and participated in blacksmithing, knife throwing, target shooting, the art of scrimshaw, and more.
While in college majoring in geological engineering, Daniel began sketching and drawing, building on the scrimshaw work he had done as a child. He also began to make copper jewelry for the local renaissance recreation group using some of his understanding of metal work from his blacksmithing. These would prove useful in his post-college years when he would later transition into lapidary. Eventually Dan found he still had an interest to paint, the experience being quite cathartic and enjoyable, and picked up water colors as a re-starting point.
All the many disparate skills Dan acquired over the years found their way into his paintings. Never willing to settle, Daniel pushed the limits of his technique using different paints, inks, stains, papers, and a variety of painting styles. One of the things he is known for is the nearly three dimensional quality of some of his paintings.
Today, Daniel teaches watercolor painting. In addition, his watercolor prints are available in both physical and virtual galleries.