Wednesday, April 30, 2008

"Returning from Lompoc"

"Returning from Lompoc" - Oil - 12" x 16" - SOLD

"The lighting at the end of this day was so fleeting, that it changed from the time I saw the scene, stopped the car and raised my camera. It made such an impression on me that I was willing to paint it in the studio. Cool shadows characterized the foreground while the last long red rays grazed the tops of the hills.” --- SFG

More info about this painting
eBay Auctions


I started badly. By concentrating on the top line of the mountains, I moved the emphasis there, away from the foreground where I wanted it, so I wiped off the canvas and started over.

Ah, that's better.

The darks go in first. I knew that the trees would be darkest...those upright surfaces rarely catch as much light in a landscape... while the distant mountains need to be cooler to distance them.

More areas in shadow on the nearest hill and by the roadside. So far, I've stayed in the correct value range for all of the area in shadow.

I made the road is a bit lighter than the hills because it reflects the sky, which is still lit even though the sun is nearing the horizon off the canvas to the right. Even the yellow field is quite muted.

I spent quite a bit of time adjusting the values in the foreground, darkening the nearest hill so it read as part of the area in shadow and even lowering the value of the road.

When all of that was in the proper relationship, it was such fun to add the tidbits that were the drama-makers...the dashes on the road, the shapes on the hills, and the headlights that were the sparkle. Their color and value had to be perfect to read properly.

1 comment:

Ron Wilson Fine Art said...

The "Returning from Lompoc" painting is my favorite - I like the shapes of all the elements and the overall composition; your colors are atypically subdued in this painting but they give much strength to the work. The eye leads in naturally without being forced. A stunning painting Susan, well done! More like this...
Ron in Canada