Everyone loves watching the sun set, I think. The colors of the sky are always gorgeous. So when I wanted to try out a split-complementary color scheme using blue, yellow orange, and red orange, images of the setting sun quickly came to mind.

I based this sunset painting on an exercise in a watercolor book by Matthew Palmer. My colors are quite different from his, but overall, I think it worked. My castle overlooking the sea isn’t great, but I really love my sky and the sun dipping down toward the horizon.

Watercolor 160629 Sunset View

I was a little more careful than usual, and I did let the painting dry before I added the rocky cliffs. My one little miscue came when, after mixing my paints, I didn’t get my brush completely clean. You’ll see a few little reddish streaks in the sky above the castle, but I’m just going to overlook them. For a color practice painting, I’m very pleased with how it turned out.

The colors I used were cerulean blue, gamboge, and scarlet lake, mixing my red orange and yellow orange, and also adding in a tiny bit of Payne’s gray in places.

Now, I’ll move on to another analogous color scheme and paint a new landscape. I think I’ll also spend a little time painting more sunsets, too.


  1. Sunset colors can be so hard, I know! I went out last evening and soon will upload them. I am so happy that you are stretching yourself, there is growth always in that. My favorite part of your painting is the glowing sky, almost a little surrealistic….will you been joining us all in the World Watercolor in July? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I’m ready to begin. I’m keeping my paint and watercolor blocks close at hand and am looking forward to trying a lot of new things during the upcoming month. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Yes, I was going with my credo of being bold this year when I painted that red streak. 🙂 I kinda like being bold and courageous with my colors. I’m going to do that more often. 🙂

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