View Full Version : Forest Path WIP

A Few Pigments
09-17-2004, 01:19 AM


Title: Forest Path WIP
Year Created: 2004
Medium: Acrylic
Surface: Canvas
Dimension: 12x16 inches
Allow digital alterations?: Yes!

Iím working from a black and white photo. The red line shows how much of the photo Iím using. Iím trying to bring the path from lower left to past center on the right where the sunshine hits the path before it moves back to the left.

Palette; cad yellow deep, yellow ochre, prussian blue, cobalt blue, raw sienna, burnt umber, raw umber, ivory black, titanium white.

Do you think the composition is working? Are the colors working? I think I need to add a tree trunk or a tree or something to the lower right side.
Any C&c wlcome.

09-17-2004, 03:15 AM
Looks good as far as I can see especially at this stage. Be careful the path doesn't reach for heaven though ..... A tree or bush on the bottom right ? I'd go for it !

09-17-2004, 05:32 AM
Good shapes all over to be found in the photograph.
I myself would crop the photo a tad bit higher, or in the painting bring the grassy area to the left some moer towards the lower left corner.
Paint on and have fun. Play!
Caroline ;)

09-17-2004, 07:49 AM
Bruce, I follow this one with interest. Nice bold brush. As Gilberte says the perspective on the path is difficult. There seems to be a natural hump, plus uneven width shown in the original reference. I think the left side of the path in the painting is the biggest problem. Maybe the direction of some of the brushstrokes in the path give it the going up appearance as well.


A Few Pigments
09-17-2004, 02:59 PM
Thank you Gilberte, Caroline and Mikey for your comments. :) They are very helpful. Iíll carry on with this and try to get it right.

A Few Pigments
09-20-2004, 04:56 AM
This is the first landscape Iíve done since high school and itís reminding me why I started painting still lifes. I painted the part of the path in yellow where I want the sunlight to hit and added some detail to the path. I still have to paint the trees in the background and the sunlight filtering down betwixt them onto the road where the yellow patch is. Itís at times like this I wish I knew how to paint.


Wayne Gaudon
09-20-2004, 05:15 AM
Painting is all about learning .. what to do , what not to do. I paint alla prima so I would simply block in the shapes with a home color value and then further refine them by adding different values to enhance the light, middle, darks of the objects. If you are near a library, the book Filling Your Oil Paintings With Light by Kevin Macpherson is great ..

09-20-2004, 05:24 AM
Wayne of course has said it. However, I reminded of somebody who was speaking to Henry Moore. He said Henry somebody's just written this book telling how you do your work. Henry Moore replied, don't show it me, if I find out how I do it, I wont be able.


A Few Pigments
09-20-2004, 05:51 AM
Mikey, Henry Moore was like that. I wonder what heíd be doing if he was around today. I was watching a tape tonight about the impressionists and found out that toward the end of Renoirís life he felt he didnít know how to draw and he wasnít happy with any of his paintings. He wanted to work in a more realistic style. He felt his impressionism paintings concentrated too much on the effects of light and not enough on composition. It seems no matter what an artist is doing at the moment or how much heís achieved heís never happy. So, I guess I fit right in.

Wayne Iíll look for the book but my town has such a small library their last expansion project involved putting up a second shelf, and they didnít have enough books to fill it...lol

Wayne Gaudon
09-20-2004, 08:28 AM
Mikey .. there is a lot of truth to the matter but if you get a few tricks from someone they will only help. The biggest trick is to never try to paint like anyone else because if you do you other than try to paint to the best of your ability you are doomed to misery. To me it's knowing the elements of what makes a painting, the elements of how color works, and then applying it in a fashion that suits your mentality. Each person must paint in a manner that is suitable to themselves.

Bruce .. LOL .. have them order it in. It might only take a few months. :D

09-20-2004, 06:31 PM
Just my uneducated guess Wayne, but I think our Henry knew exactly what he was about. He didn't appreciate the idea of some smart alec telling him, and possibly upsetting his equilibrium.

One of our towns leading lady artists stopped to chat with me in the street, and when I told her what a good teacher I had she put it quite bluntly, there comes a time when the old ties have to be severed. I have to find my own way this Autumn. I'm looking for other ways to learn.

Hi Bruce :wave: Will Bourguerau help you? Maybe copying helps to train our eye to be more accurate.


A Few Pigments
09-20-2004, 10:57 PM
Hi Mikey,
I learned from Anders Zorn to make my brushstrokes decisively. Heaven only knows what Iíll learn from Bourguerau. The only thing Iíve learned from Bourguerau so far is if one wants a painting to look photo realistic glazing is good to do. Glazing is the easy way to achieve photo-realism. But Iíve had photography as a hobby since I was 8 and Iím burned out on photo realistic images. I find them very boring now. Iíd rather celebrate the inherent beauty of paint than try to pretend Iím just a camera or a copy machine. They say that the nature of life is change. If we slavishly keep painting the way the old masters did we find ourselves fighting against the nature of life and our own nature as creative individuals.

Terry Wynn
09-26-2004, 08:26 AM
. . .Wayne Iíll look for the book but my town has such a small library their last expansion project involved putting up a second shelf, and they didnít have enough books to fill it...lol

hahaha! Thanks for brightening my day with that little library comment!

I think your painting is coming along and yes, you can do landscapes...it has just taken you out of your comfort zone and you are unsure. But I love the colors and if you can do still lifes (yikes on my part) you can do this!

Good luck.


A Few Pigments
09-26-2004, 08:53 AM
Thank you Terry. I'm not sure I can do still lifes, have you seen mine? lol Really though, life took me out of my comfort zone, and I haven't been the same since. Thank you for your comments.

Terry Wynn
09-26-2004, 11:06 AM
I know what you mean about the comfort zone being gone. My was abruptly taken from me 18 years ago...since then - minor crumbles. But that's life, in fact, no guarantee of a "comfort" zone.

I've adjusted (mainly my attitude), I've survived (not always pretty but I did) and now I smile more, say "thank you" more (and mean it), try to do something good for me (paint, express myself, enjoy a sunset, play with my animals, etc) every day and just thank whoever or whatever that I wake up another day and can see and hear and go forward to the next challenge!

I went to the Plaza Art Festival (Kansas City) yesterday. Gives me faith in my abilities - so many different expressions. And once again confirmed there is no "right or wrong" - just our individuality coming through!

Keep on - you'll find what suits you. :wave:


Going to go try to find some of your still lifes now!

09-26-2004, 04:08 PM
all good

A Few Pigments
09-26-2004, 04:29 PM
This is my progress so far. Iím trying for a canopy of trees with the sun filtering down onto the path. I blocked in dark green and will build up to mid tones and highlights. This will take awhile.

09-26-2004, 04:51 PM
It's looking good to me.


A Few Pigments
09-26-2004, 05:51 PM
Thank you Mikey.

Thank you jerryW.

tjhi Iím glad you survived whatever misfortune befell you 18 years ago. Thank you for taking the time to share a part of yourself and thank you for the encouragement. :)

A Few Pigments
11-04-2005, 04:34 PM
I started working on this again and hope to finish it before the end of the year. C & c welcome.


11-05-2005, 10:59 AM
what is that line going down the canvas?

A Few Pigments
11-05-2005, 02:41 PM
Hi Valerie,
The line is from the scan. I donít have a digital camera so I have to scan my work.

11-05-2005, 03:21 PM
Bruce - in the photo the path has a relatively shorter area of darkest darks and the crucial lights at the end. Be sure you dont loose that.

11-05-2005, 03:48 PM
hey bruce, how about distributing some of the yellow from the green around in the earth colors. I think it need a bit of a punch.

A Few Pigments
11-05-2005, 05:21 PM
Hi Valerie, I agree it needs more. It will take me some time to figure out where the light should be and where those darks will do the most good composition wise. Thankx for the help. :)

Hi Kathleen, Iíll keep the area in mind. Iím having a bit of trouble sorting out the size of the different bits because I placed the highlighted area higher on the canvas than I should have. I really should have placed it just one third up the canvas. Live and learn. Thankx for the help. :)

11-08-2005, 12:33 AM
:wave: Hello Bruce !!!! great progress !!!! looking really good!!!! I so like this painting , gives me a peacful feeling.Keep up the great work , cant wait to see it when you are done !!!! I will look in on your progress for time to time. I am a newbie myself and so i don't have the experience to to give you any tips but i know what i like and this speaks to me. thanks for letting us enjoy this.Have a Great Day !!! ( Smiles & Hugs ):cat:

A Few Pigments
11-08-2005, 05:44 PM
Hi mckenzies_nest, thank you for your comments. Youíre very kind. Have a great day! :)

A Few Pigments
12-05-2005, 09:27 PM
I did some more work on this. I decided to put a tree on the right side. Does anyone think this needs a tree on the right side? Does the light look okay filtering down through the trees from left to right? C&c welcome.


A Few Pigments
01-08-2006, 10:48 PM
I did a bit more work on this. I think it looks better unless it doesnít. Is the composition working? More to the point is there any composition? C & c welcome.


A Few Pigments
01-08-2006, 10:50 PM
I did a bit more work on this. I think it looks better unless it doesnít. Is the composition working? More to the point is there any composition? C & c welcome.


01-08-2006, 11:31 PM
I like this very much! The composition can be enhanced and also the depth of the painting by extending the shadows of those tree trunks across the road, and maybe even adding then a shadow in the foreground from an unseen tree. The beautiful, enticing little sunlit glade would also I think show itself at least just a little bit between the tree trunks. I love the sumptuous earthy color in this!

A Few Pigments
01-09-2006, 12:18 AM
Hi Corvus Korax,
I agree with your suggestions and Iíll try to work them into the painting. Thank you for your comments.