Wednesday, April 28, 2010
I will be posting a 30X40 painting in the next day or so, but in the mean time, I did a small landscape painting for the "Salute to Summer" show opening in June at the Jackson Wyoming Trailside Gallery. I love how cloud cover can quickly come in and cover the peaks of mountains. It's what happened the last time I visited the Tetons in Wyoming. In the distance you could see that it was clearing and wouldn't be long till the sun was back. It was a very windy day, so I named it the name of the wind, the same as the old song of the same name. Total painting time, 3 1/2 hours.
When I first started painting landscapes, it would take me days to produce one of these. As usual, I was getting lost in the details, instead of concentrating on the light effect, which is the essence of so many successful landscapes. I would get lost in painting the pine trees, being a slave to my reference, instead of using my photos as a jumping off point. Now I paint my areas in as general shapes, puzzle pieces which fit into each other, leaving the details until the effect was there already. Decide wher your focal point is and let the other areas in your painting play seconds to it. I wanted the focal point of this piece to be the area highlighted in detail #3 below. It has the areas of biggest contrast, and most detail. Everything else should support it, not compete with it. Don't kill a painting with extraneous details!
Posted by Steve Atkinson