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Under Painting of the Background
Most often thought is given first to the sky colors in a landscape painting. This is because the hues on elements in the painting will be effected by those selected sky colors. Especially if your painting water in your scene is this so.
I've chosen to paint a light blue sky color by brushing on the canvas a small amount of Thalo Blue with Titanium White. Be careful on how much Thalo Blue you use for it is very rich and over powering. I first started near the middle portion just above the mountains painting in Titanium White with a tiny bit of Indian Yellow. Brushing on colors this way gives a warm glow that can be reflected onto the landscape.
These colors I brushed onto the mountains along with Burnt Umber and Cadmium Yellow Light. This takes some experimenting on the right mixture to use which is dependent on the landscape. What I try to focus on are the hues in this step to help give the painting depth.
Under Painting of Bear's Head
Burnt Umber and Ultramarine Blue where mixed to create dark colors for the bear's portrait. Painting this way is necessary to give contrast to the bear's fur when it is brushed in later on. This also helps to establish the values in different areas of the facial structure giving us a roadmap to guide us.
At this time it's good to stop and evaluate the painting so far. One thing that is noticeable is a feeling of distance. This was acheived where the mountains were painted in a lighter color then the bear's head. More distance was created as darker colors where added to the mountains as they got closer to the foreground. It's as if the bear's head is standing out from the rest of the painting. Some adjusting in hues will take place but not until the blueberries are painted in.
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