This is a very large canvas (60"x60"). I began by toning it a soft medium green, wiping away a few of the lightest spots. When that dried, I drew the main trees with thinned brown paint. Then I painted the furthest background, gradually moving forward due to all the overlapping branches and leaves. Sunstream Pecans, a project for Pearson Farm, 60x60.
Here are the stages of a typical painting of mine while in progress. My favorite way to begin is to tone the canvas with thinned paint and, using a rag, wipe away the light areas to create the drawing. This also establishes the values and light effect I want right from the start. When dry, I add some lines and dashes of color to get started. I like to work from the background forward, pretty much alla prima.