I got gouache paints this past week because I made the determination that I need to learn to work with both color/value and work in areas larger than the tip of a colored pencil. So i'm going to start doing lots of little painting studies whenever I get the opportunity.
I found a photo that had the slightly atmospheric yet detailed background effect that I've been wanting to master and had a go at it, ignoring the person in it. I felt it went pretty well, although I was surprised at how dark my midtone had to go for the yellow trees to start to glow slightly. I went over areas more often than I would have liked overall, but ease and simplicity will most likely come with practice.
I set up my paints in an old watercolor set, so now my gouache paints will be portable for plein air painting.