Friday, February 19, 2010

Choosing Subject Matter in Landscape Paintings Part 8 of 11 with Andy Braitman -- Welcome to Artist Palette Productions at Cheap Joe's Art Stuff

We've got two canvases here. Canvas number two looks like it is less finished than canvas number one but actually it has gone through an extra stage than canvas one has.

This is how I gauge what stage I am in. I really like what's happening with this background and that sense of light that is coming through here. So this I'm more happy with.

I've begun to take that dark mass and break it into a series of verticals and requisite foliage that goes with it.

These shadows are beginning to play with, complicate and flirt with this concept of turning the land. Canvas two is much further along to me that canvas one. I'm going to try and bring this painting on canvas one to the same stage as canvas two.

Part of that means starting all over again with this mass. I kinda like this mass but I definitely want to pull some sky down.

There's a very rigid line and I think the water is standing up too much. I've got to lay that water down.

It lays down here nicely but over here it's standing up. I'm talking about the difference between seeing the water like a field of light reflective and seeing the water like a ribbon.

At this point the only thing I have is density and distance, saturation of color and a nice color relationship for distance. I'm going to have to pick a subject matter.

On canvas two I've already decided that by pulling some of the trees down closer and perhaps finding a shadow that comes this way I'll be able to find the subject matter.

Then I can get more aggressive with the paint application here. I'm not aggressive enough yet. It's pretty but it doesn't have anything that I'm real exicted about in terms of paint application.

I'm going to start back here with the sky mass and pull it into the mountain a little bit.

First thing we'll do is get that fallow blue and white and I'll throw a little lemon into it. At this stage I'm starting to use smaller brushes, you can see I've got all my large brushes aside, I will be using them intermittently but for the most part I'm going to start shifting to smaller brushes because I'm being more specific.

I'm going to make sure I have a pretty color back here. I'm going to begin to use a little more medium because I've got the lean work done and now I can put a little more medium into the paint.

This color is the perfect value for the sky but I'll add a little more medium to it. I'm going to need a clean brush because the colors are so soft.

It's the same value that's already there if not a little orangier.

One of the things that most of us do is we tend to leave our canvases, an area that we like, alone. I think that the more coats you can put on the prettier it gets.

I'm going to let this shift from an orangier color and I can grey that off a little bit more. Already that looks more interesting.

I'm using a little bit of a muted green from a prettier, earlier section of the canvas to lighten it up.

I'm going to clean up that sky color from the palette. This blue is a little potent. One of the reasons I'm doing this is I wanted to lay that water down. So what I'm doing is encroaching on that light and making the mountain shape a little broader.

I'm painting right over the trees because I'm really just interested in this line right here. Notice how much more gentle I am with the paint now. I'm really looking at what I'm doing instead of just imposing myself.

I'm actually going against the shape I've been going with and using a little more intense color just for variety sake.

Our mind has a tendency to look past verticals. It's a little more reticent to that than against horizontals. So I can drop in these vertical little breaks between these trees more aggressively and our mind won't concentrate on that. It will just look interesting.

Here where there is some ambiguity, I'm going to put some of that real bright sky color right off the palette. Right here where we're a little lost about exactly whether that's water or sky.

But in the process of doing that what I want to do is make certain that I'm seeing across these broken horizontals. So that lays that water down and we're seeing the mountain on the far side.

To help you see what I see, I'm going to drop in a little bit of these dark so you can see at this horizontal line just how effectively that little band of color laid that water down.

I'll take a little bit of this greener blue and sweep some balance and color across.

I don't want to encroach on that distance too much. Since I know I'm going to come across these two verticals one more time I'm going to let some of that light spill in to this flat plain here and be a little more ambiguous about where the water ends and the ground begins.