Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Turn It Upside Down

I had to resort to the old tried and true method for "getting it right" when I can't tell what's bugging me the most about a painting. In this case, though, I was pretty sure that what was bothering me was the lack of foreground space and the thickness of the trunk of the tree. What had drawn me to the composition in the first place was the design of the shadows in the foreground, yet, when I did the sketch, I placed the bottom of the tree too far down and stretched out the trunk. I thought I'd be okay with that and lost myself, instead, in the plethora of colored leaves. In the end, or at least 12 hours into the painting, I always come back to what is missing and it was the big, fat foreground. And so, to punish my weak ways, I did a day of technical painting with the canvas upside down so I could only look at shapes. This usually works to help me see things more clearly and I can figure out where the weak spots are. So, I think I got it! And now I may just spend another painting session working upside down so that I can really get the shadows the right value, hue, and color temperature, though I am rather fond of the warmth in them right now (on the right). We shall see. I may just finish making dog food and do laundry for the rest of the day. I'm a hippie mom.

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