Before doing the class demo from the previous blog I did a quick marker value study. By exploring and simplifying the value arrangements in a quick sketch I was better able to tie some of the pieces together. I think its like beginning a conversation with someone you don't know yet. We found an understanding that let us continue.
I then did this 4 1/4 by 4 3/4 color comp on some watercolor paper(the scan came out a bit dark). I used a palette knife so the colors would stay fresh and unblended. I remember being most interested in how to treat the background tones, keeping them related to the other parts. Sometimes these comps are as appealing as the finished painting.