View Full Version : First Snow Flies--Ellensburg

01-25-2005, 04:04 PM

Title: First Snow Flies--Ellensburg
Year Created: 2005
Medium: Oil
Surface: Board
Dimension: 16 x 20
Allow digital alterations?: Yes!

First of all the photo is a little light in the upper right corner. The sky is uniformly "grey" throughout. My goal in this piece was to paint the gloominess of the day. Not much light and everything a shade of grey (almost). I wanted the feel of late fall with the snow coming early, suddenly, and cold.

How can you create a dynamic painting when everything must be distilled to grey? I am one who is constantly touting the merits of dynamic light and gave myself this piece as a challenge to try to paint an interesting grey scene.

What can I do to make it interesting?

01-25-2005, 04:49 PM
It is already interesting. The painter's point of view, being the bottom of the road is excellent. Just wondering about the two roofs (steeple/tower ?) meeting ... if it weren't for the poles it could be here in Flandres, low grey skies and muddy roads .....

01-25-2005, 06:15 PM
You've already got some dynamics with your low point of view, and the diagonals of the road. Bright colors are not necessary.

Is there any way you could post another photo - you said the sky is a uniform grey, but it's hard to really judge the painting with that bright area in the upper right. That alone gives it a lot of drama. Without that bright spot, I think it might need something more on the right side - poles, trees, buildings, something...

01-25-2005, 07:42 PM
That lovely red roof brings the center of attention to the bldgs in that area. The amber color of the foliage helps to make the picture less somber. Very nice work. Show a little more snow since you called attention to it with your title. I would not have known it was snow-I had to look really hard to see it.

01-25-2005, 08:02 PM
intensify color in light areas (as you did with bushes)
intensify darks and gray planes where dark and mid
some more sharp edges discretely -light and dark- partially along the lengths of some edges.

01-25-2005, 11:36 PM
I agree with Madame that it's already interesting. The perspective and the palette ad an eerie mood to it that pulls you in to investigate. I also agree with Jerry about the revisions in certain areas if you are not happy with it yourself; that's what counts: you. I wish I could do that photoshop magic thing you do myself - hey - why not use it ON YOURSELF? ;)

01-26-2005, 07:55 AM
lovely moody quality - it is hard to judge with the bright corner - as someone said it would be nice to see another image without that flare of light. I agree that without it though, the balance of the picture may need a little tweaking - that corner may look right lighter, just not as light.

you seem to be using complimentaries to give some glow to the muted colours of the day, with mauve greys offsetting the muted orangey browns of the foliage. Using colour in this way even a painting of a dull day can sing. I like it. :cat:

Wayne Gaudon
01-26-2005, 08:11 AM
the diagnol tracks in the sky are not to the caliber of the rest of the painting .. the sky is weak

As for how to work the grays, I personally, Opinion, of course, would have painted the sky using green-red and red-green grays but a value darker than you have and not so uniform .. darker at the top with lighter values across the lower sky to make the buildings glow a little more. The grain shed I would use the same values as you use but the shadow side would be green-red gray and the light side would be red and yellow-purple gray. That would give a stronger indication of light but not direct light. The yellow line seems to divide the highway .. one type of light on one side of the line and another type of light on the other side of the line .. seems odd. Each telephone pole should lose some value with distance. You have diminished the size but not the value.

The rendering of everything except the sky is stunning. :clap: :clap:

01-26-2005, 08:20 AM

The first thing I noticed when looking was that light in the upper corner. A little too bright but I really think it is perfect there. For you to decide.
Love the overall mood very much.

Linda :wave:

01-26-2005, 02:18 PM
Overall great mood, although I'd also like to see a little more snow and the yellow line in the road toned down a little so it doesnt so forcefully cut off that triangle in the corner.

01-26-2005, 02:30 PM
After so much have been said, I just want to comment that I like the eerie mood with an anticipation of first snow flakes. I can see it's just start snowing, since I can see the tiny snow flakes flying. Interesting perspective, too.