Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Fall Reflections - Landscape Oil Painting on Canvas
There is a hayfield down the road which I am sure was once used for cattle, but is now just for haying. In the middle of it is a clump of trees surrounding a small pond which is very picturesque when the leaves turn color in the fall.
So, I decided to paint it and put the pond in front of the trees so the reflections of the colors would be visible.
Even the oranges, reds and yellows are very subdued. This will give the feeling of distance.
I am using a one inch flat brush for this painting. To put the tree trunks in, the edge of the brush works just fine. No need to change to a smaller brush.
It's much easier to do it while I have the correct colors on my palette. If I waited to do the edges after the painting was done, I'd have to mix all the colors again.
My palette consists of six colors: a warm and a cool of each of the primary colors - red, yellow and blue.
One of the oaks is a beautiful red which makes a nice contrast to the other colors.
If you look to the left, you can see those far trees. Notice how their subdued colors and much smaller size make them appear to be in the distance.
It's good to have a variety of trees with some full of leaves and others more bare. This creates more interest than if they were all the same.
I start out just blocking in colors with the aim of keeping a mirror image of the trees. This means basically being sure the reflections line up with the trees above them.
Here are the colors blocked in.
You may notice that I changed the right hand red tree to golden. This was because once the reflections were in, the four red areas including trees and reflections made too perfectly balanced an image which was a bit boring. We don't want boring!
Once again, the reflections should match up to the trunks above them.
To denote movement in the water, I paint some long horizontal lines through the wet paint of the trunk reflections and a swath of pale blue sky reflection over part of the trees.
If the water was smooth as glass, the reflection would not be disturbed and we'd have a mirror image. But I would like some movement. So I paint little choppy bits of blue sky reflection into the trees as well.
Here is the finished piece! The sun shines onto the distant field. The trees cast both shadows onto the ground and reflections onto the water, the surface of which is ruffled by a slight breeze.
Posted by Janet Zeh