Step 1. I glazed the entire painting with a pale green wash, using hansa yellow medium and a small amount of phthalo blue red shade. After allowing that to dry, I used masking fluid on the alder trunk to save the lichen areas. I also used it for the tree branches and then rewet the background and added the pale crimson trunks of the trees seen in the distance. I darkened the wash on the left side of the alder, and used negative painting to reveal the bright leaf shapes on the upper left corner.
Step 2. Next I painted the alder trunk, using a pale permanent alizarin crimson mixed with quinacridone burnt orange. I dropped in phthalo green to create the tinted cast shadows. Next I painted in some loose fern shapes in the foreground. I added the trunk in the middle distance, leaving some areas unpainted to indicate the patches of lichen.
Step 3. I painted some cooler green leaves in the upper right foreground, using a little bit of phthalo green with hansa yellow medium. Next I began to indicate more leaves in the right foreground, and developed additional leaf shapes in the middle section of the painting.
Step 4. I worked in the middle distance, creating more dappled leaf shapes, and also developed the left side of the painting by galzing with a yellow/green and dropping in some darker greens wet into wet. After the paint dried, I removed the masking fluid on the left side of the painting.
Step 5. At this point, I decided to glaze most of the painting with a thin wash of hansa yellow, as I felt it didn't have the glow that I wanted to portray.
Step 6. I painted some loose leafy shaps in the right foreground, trying not to define them too specifically.
Step 7. I noticed that the dark forest on the left side of the painting wa a bit gloomy and I decided to try to break up the darkness a litte bit. I used a Fritch scrub to remove four smal oval leaf shapes. Next I did some negative painting int he right foreground to further define the leafy shapes. I added a thin glaze to the right side of the large alder to pop it out a bit more.
Step 8. I painted over the scrubbed leaf shapes iwth a mixture of hansa yellow and a small amount of phthalo blue red shade and dabbed in just a few more leaf shapes in the lower right corner, trying again to keep them more suggestive of leaves than a more specific and illustrative style of painting them. I also decided to darken the wash on the right side of the trunk just a bit more to pop out the pale trunk further.