Wow – Day 24 already in the May “Create and Post Everyday” Challenge!  What’s the agenda today?  Diving into the deep inviting cobalt blue lake  surrounded by a warm  golden burnt sienna cliff face.  “The Blue Lake,”  acrylic abstract!


blue lake acrylic abstract painting, textures in acrylics, debi riley
Acrylic Blue Lake abstract



Acrylic Abstract


Blue Lake.

The deep blue was created with a combination of cobalt blue, ultramarine blue and a pinch of white.



Escarpment rocks, hills.

The craggy hills and rockery needed a blend of burnt umber, quinacridone burnt sienna, and quinacridone gold.

These were skimmed over a prepared canvas. I’d already gessoed it to create plenty of texture!





Complementary Pairs


I took advantage of complementary pairings in this acrylic abstract painting.

The orange and browns complement  the blue, balancing the image.

Blue and Orange have been my favourite color pairing for years.  I love bird of paradise flowers for that reason.

These colors resonate with me and just seem to be “Happy Colors.”



There are 3  complementary pairs
  • blue and orange
  • yellow and purple
  • red and green



If I have a painting a bit too strong in one color (perhaps a purple…)  then to balance it up,  I’d dash in a jot or two of its complement (yellow.)

This method helps to relieve any tension and enliven some boring areas and paintings.





Deciding a Design Format


contemporary, abstract acrylic landscapes, blue lake painting, debi riley art
Acrylic Abstract Landscape


This is a square version, cropped a little closer with tighter detail.

As I mentioned  in Flames of a Flower,   I like to alter my formats.

See what my options are.  What will look best.

Its kind of like trying on  2-3 dresses, to see which one looks right on the day.





Blue Lake Acrylic Abstract was a great exercise in using complementary pairs. It also gave me the opportunity to use a variety of textural approaches.

I made the blue lake look more flat and subtle, simply by moving the textured strokes horizontally.  And very evenly all the way across the painting.


Blue Lake Acrylic Abstract painting  used a simple palette. Focusing more on color and texture than on specific representational objects.





 additional  posts  on  abstracts:    



Abstract,  Filaments of Time and Space 

Explosion of Color,  Dale Chihuly  

Paul Jenkins  Colourful  Abstracts

John Olsen 

Abstracts Easy Watercolor 

Beautiful Lines of Abstraction 

Touch the Mountain,  Watercolor Abstract 

Acrylic Abstract Ocean in Turquoise Blue