I thought that I was finished with the area, but then I noticed a few details that could be improved on in the crystal, geode, stone and surrounding cloth.

Japanese basket #103

Japanese basket #128

The geode needed some more punch. The right side didn’t look bright enough considering its closeness to the light source. I added some sparkling lights to the far right edge. Also the left side of the triangular hole in its center was catching some light. In both of these areas, it only required a few tiny specks of paint to make a difference! I brightened the highlights on the green stone- both the major one, and the smaller yellow one to its right. For the bigger highlight, I painted some small lines radiating out from its center. If you look carefully at a bright highlight on a shiny surface, you can actually observe these! They have to be painted subtlety, though, or the effect can be easily overdone. I also brightened the upper edge of the stone, showing the reflections from the basket above. I painted some reflected light into all of the cast shadows onto the cloth, lightening them and adding some color.

I brightened the top side of the crystal and added some reflected light to its left side. Finally, I added some scumbled lights to the raised areas of the cloth that were catching the light. To do this, I dragged a dry brush loaded with a warm light color over these areas. (I had to mix the color much warmer than you’d think, because scumbles always look cool.) The top of the weave of the canvas catches some of the paint, creating a shimmering effect that nicely conveys the look of highlights.