Monday, December 19, 2011
There are times when the mood is on you and this was one of those times. I had been looking at an intriguing play of light in the mountains and thought that it would be fun to work it into a painting.
Its pretty much traditional to begin a painting with a values sketch - to work it all out with pencil and paper before making a commitment with paint. But get this.
I playfully painted the sky and thought, it would be good to put some trees in the moonlight, and the rest went from there - one whimsical brush stroke after the other, with the muse leading the way.
Its basically a pretty straightforward work; sky, hills trees, water and some mist. But, its not what you paint - but how you paint. The subject is subordinate to how you arrange your subject matter and how you work your values into it. This creates atmosphere.
I knew I had a winner, when I left it sitting on my kitchen table. Everyone who saw it, "ooh'd and aaah'd.
It was fun to play with the diffusion of moonlight, and spread it into the painting. I intentionally laid in a faint band of mist on the left side, to catch the moonlight and carry it forward into the middle zone of the work. In the end, I tossed in a few touches of light on the grass and on the foreground trees and a few little touches of light, here and there to give the impression of sparkle. (can you find them at the bottom). I balanced these off with touches of starlight at the top. Ahh the joys of being a painter!
For those with an analytical spirit, this work measures in at 46cm x 60cm (16"x24").
And finally - it hasn't found a wall to hang on at this time of writing.