View Full Version : No Spring for the Lobster Boat

05-15-2015, 11:23 AM
Ok...I worked on the little 6 x 9 trial of Uart with watercolor underpainting. I'm having the devil of a time with perspective on the little shack, which I want to look painterly, no geometrical. Did I get it? The painting is based on the reference I put up in the Celebrating Spring Spotlight. (Don let us submit photos this time.)
Title is "No Spring for Lobster Boat."
It's tiny so Nupastel and cretacolor and pastel pencils. some Girault, a few softies in the sky. I tried to get more color in the sky without getting a blue sky but I think I filled up the tooth. Does one have to press the color into the Uart? All C and C most welcome

water girl
05-15-2015, 02:17 PM
I don't think most people appreciate just how much work goes into a 6X6 painting and you have put in a lot of work. What if you didn't put the window there, but a simple door opening? Determine from which side your light is coming and make the value lighter on that side of the building, then the shadow side, darker. That may be why you are not happy with the perspective. You have done a wonderful job creating the reflections. You may also find a few horizontal lines in the water will make the reflection a bit more interesting.These are just suggestions, so give any change consideration before picking up the pencils or sticks.

05-15-2015, 03:18 PM
So the window is attracting too much attention. Good point. I will work on the shadows of the building. I can see where that is faulty. Thank you so much. I'll let the painting rest for a bit. Thanks for the suggestions

05-17-2015, 10:27 AM
Aww, the poor lobster boat's career is finished? I see the broken window. BTW I don't see it in the reflection. Did you forget? I absolutely love the colors you've used in this. I agree with Karen that the shack could use more emphasis on light and shadow, and those windows don't seem right, somehow. Maybe because one expects to see a door. Actually, I think an open door leading into a dark interior might add interest. Maybe leave a window on either side of the door? I've looked at this painting several times and think that the pier, although beautifully done, is leading the eye out of the painting. It occurred to me you might add something to break it up, perhaps some lobster traps, netting or other fishing paraphernalia? I'd put it this side of the blue rowboat, a little left of the piling. But this is just IMHO, so don't change anything without giving it thought. You've done a beautiful job in such a small painting. The grass is stunning, as are the trees, boat and reflections!

05-17-2015, 08:16 PM
Thank you Blayne. Wow..this tiny little painting will be just chock full of goodies. Great suggestions. Thank you. I already smushed out the window so changes will be made. I did forget the broken window in the reflection. So much to remember.

05-18-2015, 03:27 AM
i think that if you took out the lobster boat , the windows , and the " blue " boat you have a very harmonious painting .
- the question then becomes ; what palette/colour scheme is needed for those objects in order to keep the harmony ?
-- it's okay if you can't get that now ---- that's part of learning on your own .


05-18-2015, 07:41 AM
Thanks for the Comment Ed. It's funny. The attraction to this painting for me was the golden reeds and then the blue of the lobster boat, (much more hidden in the original photo I took.). So interesting to see how others interpret a scene. So you're saying that the lobster boat and row boat disrupt the color harmony. What color would you suggest for them? The window has been voted out already. :wink2: Thanks for commenting.

05-18-2015, 08:27 AM
Very painterly already! I mentioned directional light in my previous critique and also slightly darkening the sky especially at the top of the painting (zenith) to heighten its gradation. A gradated sky is natural and cohesive. If it's overcast the reflection in the water should be gray, not blue. At the moment it could go either way and overcast would be the more difficult choice.

I think it's the right side of the shack that's already shadowed. The left side of the boat should have some dappled cast shadows from the trees and those might have a greenish cast from reflected color.

This is a gorgeous painting and a few tweaks will make it spectacular!

05-18-2015, 12:32 PM
Thanks Robert. You always give such thoughtful critique. Much appreciated

05-21-2015, 10:13 AM
I made some changes and I'm not sure they are right but the little painting appeals to me like this. A good learning experience for me to listen to various critiques. thank you all.

water girl
05-21-2015, 12:38 PM
Success! The building works very well now, and the slight rippling of the water works to make a more believable reflection. You should be happy now.

05-21-2015, 02:46 PM
I am happy Karen. Thank you for the ripple suggestion and the window help. Everyone has been most kind.


05-21-2015, 06:31 PM
You're really made the grass and boat the center of interest now! Great work in the water, the reflections and the foliage!

05-21-2015, 08:57 PM
Like the changes. Very nice painting. Pam

05-22-2015, 07:33 AM
Blayne, thank you. That's what I wanted.

Pam, thanks. You would recognize the South Jersey look. Thanks for stopping by.

05-22-2015, 10:32 AM
I love the changes, too! Removing the window helped focus the attention and lends an abandoned quality to this little scene. The color choices are spot on. I always love paintings with blues and yellows! The ripples really made the water and reflection work. Great job! :)

05-22-2015, 12:45 PM
Thanks Bethany. Everybody helped. That's what is great about wet canvas and especially pastel people.

Donna T
05-22-2015, 05:25 PM
What a nice painting, Jay! The changes you made worked so well to put the focus where you wanted it. I know it's a small piece but I also like how this looks when you crop off most of the sky so that only a small bit shows above the building. You lose the top of the trees but the boat seems to make a bigger impact (and we can see the sky in the water.) I can't help it - I crop everything!

05-22-2015, 09:26 PM
I'd love to see your crop Donna. Thanks you. It is a bit tall. Show me? Thanks

Donna T
05-23-2015, 07:47 AM
Hi Jay, I was thinking of something like this. I know we're not supposed to divide our paintings exactly in half and I was trying not to do that. It's kind of interesting to see how the feel of the painting changes when the large expanse of sky is removed.


05-23-2015, 04:41 PM
I like it Donna, thanks. I wanted to take some sky away but that would have made the division exactly in the middle. Your way is better, just a wee bit off the middle.
I had cut a 9 x 12 Uart in half to try it. That's where 6 x 9 came from. Was a bit awkward. Thanks again. Made it stronger, I think.

05-24-2015, 06:26 PM
interesting crop from Donna .

sorry not to get back sooner .
> squint as best you can ...
the blue , white of the boats + the yellow grass really pops out , no ?
- if that's what you want , you have it ,
and if so , i would crop much tighter to the lobster boat/reeds + whatever water/background frames it .
( difficult b/c that now demands more detail with that size and substrate )

two issues in question ;
a subject , and how to surround it .
a scene/setting , and the focal point(s) within .


05-25-2015, 05:51 AM
Thanks Ed. You always give me something to think about. I think I like this little painting now. I do like the white boat and the reeds. Donna's crop is pleasing. I'm not sure what you meant that it would require more detail and what did you mean about "substrate" please? I appreciate the comments