View Full Version : Nearing Moab x post from Landscape

Sarah Rose
08-20-2013, 04:16 PM
The reference photo for this was taken on a recent road trip from the window of a moving vehicle (sometimes you get great references this way). I am trying to improve my landscapes, and wanted to try something colorful. I feel short of what I wanted to achieve, but did better than I thought I would with this. I felt I struggled with the clouds and mountains, the middle ground, and the foreground, well all of it really. Any advice? Critiques?





08-20-2013, 09:44 PM
This is very nicely done! In my opinion, vast panoramic landscapes like this one make great photos and, by far, the hardest type of landscape to paint. You've done really well!


Sarah Rose
08-20-2013, 09:52 PM
Thanks Don. I have found that I do better with more intimate scenes, but I am so in love with the wide open West...must do more!

08-22-2013, 03:37 PM
I agree with Don. This is a really good effort! Faced with such a wonderful photo it's a lot to live up to. These sort of scenes are among the most difficult to paint!

Sarah Rose
08-22-2013, 04:16 PM
Thank you Ruthie :) I seem to keep picking scenes that are more challenging than I expect, I guess at some point one figures that out.

08-24-2013, 11:25 PM
There is such a lot in this painting and you have really captured the vast landscape.

08-25-2013, 07:52 AM
I love the sky....so brooding !!


08-28-2013, 05:00 PM
an interesting ref pix - good catch !
- it seems that there is a scrim/veil of blue which diffuses the sky and tints the earth ground furthest from the viewer ;
an influence of sky colour + atmospheric depth ...

your painting has strong values/saturation thruout - not to be argued .
> was it your intention to play the horizontal lines as a picture component against what a viewer might expect from such a panorama ?


08-28-2013, 05:12 PM
I think you have created a very nice painting that is just a touch off of making it to the "next level."

I am reminded a little bit of a recent landscape by Jeremy Lipking. your painting has all the subtle mid-tones of his work but it lacks just a little focus/pop to take it one step further. A well placed shadow or area of a little vibrancy and i think this painting could be outstanding. Imagine, for example (not saying this is the direction you want to go) a hint of warm yellow sunlight falling across those deep blue mountains?

You said that you felt you struggled with the clouds, the mountains the foreground & middle ground. Imho the middleground was handled fine (i dont quite know what it is, but thats ok - it makes me want to focus on the mountains even more!) the mountains just need a touch more definition, but the clouds & the foreground i think are fine, again because they dont detract from your main focal point.

personally, i think you're very close. Sometimes its that final stage that takes a work from very good to great.

Sarah Rose
08-29-2013, 10:34 AM
Jen, Barbara, Ed, and Justin: Thanks so much!

Ed, no I did not do anything intentionally with my horizontal lines, I am not yet at the point where I feel comfortable departing from the reference, not on purpose. It could happen without my being aware I am doing it. I have been painting for a year (I am a sculptor by trade) and have been focusing on horses but want to improve my landscapes.

Justin, my eventual goal is to do decent enough landscapes that I can start adding in horses and wildlife, or not :) I agree with everything you said, it needs the wow factor but I am not quite there. I have more reference pics of the area and will give it another go with a different photo, a fresh start :)

08-29-2013, 06:23 PM

hmm , sculpture , yes , i see an influence .

an issue with landscape ( most obviously ) is ' atmospheric perspective ' , that is ,
whatever is in the air ( moisture , dust , etc. ) which we learn to understand as an indication of depth/distance ,
and the dominant colour of the stuff influences the colour(s) of the objects themselves -
kinda like a transparent wash or glaze over with wet media ,
but pastel doesn't behave the same way , so , technique gets specific/unique .
> if the land/foreground and the mountains/sky look very separated to you
then you recognize the issue ,
but this is assuming that you want to make a ' natural ' setting for figures/animals ...
>> Gustav Klimt , among others , painted very ' natural ' figures against an invented/experimented background ,
and painting going way back before the Renaissance
was a whole different look/concept/politics ( :rolleyes: )
so there are all kinds of references/options with which you may feel kindred to your skill with pastel at this point .

is someone asking you to picture their horse/pet/whatever in a setting ?
> there have been threads here with excellent ' animal portraits ' with little or no surrounding ...


ps. i'm self-taught , and have stayed away from ' disciplines ' of/from ' schools ' , but have always looked at artists' work ... :)

Sarah Rose
08-29-2013, 06:31 PM
Ed, I am working on a series of mustang paintings and would like to eventually depict them on the range, in settings such as this. Plus, I just want to get better at landscapes. Thanks for your feedback, I can see where the arial perspective needs some work, thanks!