Okay, back to the Annuals painting...
values with a graphite pencil. With each layer of paint much of this graphite will lift off, so I pencilBecause I will be using lots of water and very wet pigments on this piece I gently scrub in my darkest in quite a bit to see where I am going.
You can see I use quite a bit of pencil so that I will have graphite left after each application of paint to help me navigate my way through to the end.
Just be sure you don't push too hard with your pencil. Use a soft lead so that you can deposit a good amount of graphite without damaging the canvas or scratching through your absorbent ground.
You can mask either before or after this step to save the whites (value number one).