I assembled some items for the still life, a glass paper weight, a piece of blue slate and a resign skull I use for reference when drawing heads.
Using a single red, a white and a black tube of Gouache paint I mixed three values, tinting the red with white and creating a shade with the black.
The three objects have three different qualities, the glass paper weight is transparent, and glossy, it picks up all the reflections from the room and the surrounding items in the still life, its shape distorts the reflections. the resin skull is quite dull and doesn’t reflect light as well, grey in colour shows up the shadows quite well and offers a lot of detail.
The slate has a lot of texture and the ridges create some harsh changes in tone.
The key to these tonal exercises seems to be some forward planning, observing the tonal values and then establishing a medium to make either lighter or darker. The dark cloth being the darkest in this still life and then the reflections off the glass paper weight picking up from a selection of all gave me a lot to study. I really enjoyed this exercise.