View Full Version : Melon on the Deck

02-19-2000, 04:09 PM
This is an older painting of mine that I still like but it needs a lot of reworking
...quite large (48x30) acrylic. Please give me some ideas of how to make it better or should I just toss it? Thanks for your suggestions, carlyne

Now if someone will just tell me how to get the pic into the message?


[This message has been edited by CHClements (edited February 19, 2000).]

02-19-2000, 04:50 PM
Go to the Critique Center page from the wetcanvas main page. All instructions are there.

02-19-2000, 07:39 PM
Thanks Henrik!..have my shades on because the summer sun is so bright!

02-20-2000, 01:20 AM
well chc I think you rdarks need to be darker. a stronger contrast in values. also what is your focal point? if it is the bench I need to know it is. and be careful of triangles in corners. as in the flowers. I think you can save it with a few changes. Good luck.

02-20-2000, 03:29 AM
Like it a lot.
Don't toss this one - it is almost finished. Don't know if you really have to make darker darks, that may alter the feel of the painting. Try to increase contrast in your image editing program and see if you like what you see.

I think you need to work on the melons and make them stand out more. The title suggests that the melons are the main subject. Now the melons and colored cloth interfere with each other. They melons also look a bit dull. The strong light on the table top (seen infront of the left melon) suggests that there should be more light on the melons. It is also perhaps a good thing to change the colors used in the cloth's stripes. I would try replacing the green stripes since they are almost the same color/value as the green in the melons (squint your eyes and the melon to the right and the cloth merge).

02-20-2000, 01:47 PM
the softness produced by the "modeling" and the horizontal line in/on the deck makes it look like a pillow http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/wink.gif

the wall looks like it could be wood or stucco..I like the stucco idea, in which case the thickness of the wall should be deeper (as shown by the top edge of the wall)

water could use a gradation of value..maybe just a little darker in front/closer to the viewer..it could just be the photo, but looks like the curvature of the earth is very pronounced here..if I were to sail out from the little land mass I would be afraid of falling off the edge of the earth!!

ok, now scroll the image on the screen to see only the top 1/3rd of the pic..is bland..maybe some birds or clouds could do something in there..how 'bout a bird on the edge of the far wall of the deck eyeing those slices of melon

and Henrik is right about the fabric under the melons, they are lost in all that color

hope this helps Carly http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif
(btw, did you photograph this scene?)

02-20-2000, 03:21 PM
Lots of good ideas...I had never noticed the effect of the shadows on the deck..but it does look like a pillow!..the wall was actually made of canvas so the light filtered thru it and the top of it had wavy places..probably why my shadows were wavy too.
Yes, I did work from some photos..was a sunny breezy day...the melons looked too forlorn on paper plates..so I made up the runners using some placemats that I had at the time I painted.
The flower wasn't in any of the photos.. but the deck looked so bare..I stuck it in! Bad decision from the beginning!
Like the idea of clouds and the gull on the deck wall!
After looking at it more...I'm not too sure I have all the shadows going the right direction either!
Thanks to everyone...this is great!
carly clements

02-20-2000, 04:07 PM
Hm - I don't see the "pillow". I think you are doing ok - there is a cool, fresh crispness to the painting. I think more color and light on the melons will probably alter the overall perception of the scene - you may not need clouds or seagulls.

02-20-2000, 04:33 PM
Here is an attempt to show the effect of making the melons stand out.
I have done the following:
lightened the striped table cloth
increased the contrast and reduced brightness on the melons (darker darks, more saturated color)
made the tabledop even brighter - there is now a burnout from strong light
added some shadows and cast light from the melons
strong highlights on the melons - a bit of burnout and halo effect
made the sky brighter and in the process burned out the poles facing towards the bright sun.
I think you get the effect I was trying for... very VERY strong light (put http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/cool.gif on) hits melons

Phyllis Rennie
02-20-2000, 04:41 PM
I'd suggest also cropping off about 1/4 of the right side. It would then be 36" x 30" and would give a more close up look at the center of interest. After that you could add back in the small land mass with buildings in the background. Phyl

02-21-2000, 09:51 PM
I like the changes you made...and I agree, if you would cut off the left side just past the
vertical post... water needs value change from light (closer to the land mass) to darker as it comes to the forefront. Think that would give a better depth perception.
Lovely piece .....don't you dare destroy it!


02-22-2000, 09:02 AM
This has such a wonderful warm summery feeling. I like it a lot. Wish I was there right now.

02-22-2000, 02:46 PM

just an idea, to remove the pole things..I didn't think they were doing too much for you there..now ther eis room for several birds having a watermelon picnic..also liked the stucco wall idea..kinda rough with the paintprogram (my purple plates didn't do too much for it..need a different color..


[This message has been edited by kemshmi (edited February 23, 2000).]

02-22-2000, 02:49 PM
oops..didn't meant to cut the sky..

[This message has been edited by kemshmi (edited February 23, 2000).]

Drew Davis
02-22-2000, 10:28 PM
No spaces allowed in the file name. You'll need to re-upload it all run together: "CarlysPic" rather than "Carlys pic".

02-23-2000, 04:52 AM
I like the idea of cropping the left side to exclude the last vertical bar. Then the diagonal bar leads the eye towards the flowers. This looks much better.

I like the balance in the rest of the picture; the bench and table are really balanced by the empty space. The tight cropping makes the bench and table to big in my opinion.

I also like the anchoring effect of the poles; they are also needed to explain the light-scheme - there is a roof over the deck - if the poles are removed, there is no hint of a roof, and the lightning would have to be different I think.

Agree however that straight lines leading of canvas is not very good, but in this case I liked it better than just removing them. I think the poles can be improved by burning them out (very strong light) - it both strengthens the explanation of light and at the same time reduce the "lines going of canvas" problem.

02-23-2000, 01:54 PM
I didn't intend to crop the picture at all, it is a canvas and she cant really crop the canvas..I am not sure about what you are saying as the light scheme..looks like a bright sunny day to me..the only shadow (that I) left is from the table and bench..being a canvas wall I guess there is no shadow from that, the light shows through it..being a stucco wall (which Carly may not like at all) it would need a shadow too, and the direction of the sunlight be more defined, this may allow for those darker values in the painting..
this was my idea about it..
any comments Carly?
maybe several big gulls in the foreground area, having watermelon on the deck


02-23-2000, 06:05 PM
A canvas wall will leave a shadow - some light will shine through; otherwise the shadow would have been heavier. To me the light in the original looks like there is a canvas roof over our heads - that way the deck is not struck with sunlight from above.

Well... maybe I am wrong - but that is what I thought I saw...

02-24-2000, 07:15 AM
ch,,what mood were you trying for? one thing about white is that it's damn hard to paint well. white tends to float. the furniture floats as well because they're not anchord. white gets reflection from lots of color. that's why you see many artists throw every color in the rainbow into their whites. the colors all neutralize each other. just try to make your whites,,,,light. the posts are probably as light as you show, but they look odd that way. especially the posts in shadow. darken their value. the added benefit is that they will frame your background well. do you need the flowers...are they adding to the painting...if you solve the whites, your whole painting will come together....milt

02-24-2000, 06:22 PM
Bruin, you're so right about whites..sometimes I wonder why I ever put anything white into a painting.lol..always turns out to be a problem! I first called this Summertime...wanted to catch the hot summer day when the sun is so bright and the breezes feel like fairy wings on your cheek..and the watermelon smells so delicious fresh cut and cold!

I added the flowers as an afterthought for the very reason you mentioned about the white furniture seeming to float..I've decided to paint them out and see what happens! There was a canvas wall and a canvas type roof..the sun came thru on bright days and I wanted that effect on the deck flooring. But now I think that without the right references..the lighting seems a bit strange.
Will take some new pics and post the rework soon,,thanks to everyone, carly

Bruce Rohrlach
02-26-2000, 04:55 AM
I like it too Carly. (Don't!! toss). If you do - toss it my way! You have captured that nice airy summery feel well. And your "soft" colours reflect that light airy mood. The more I look at this piece from day to day the more it grows on me. What about if you added something small and not too dominating on the floor on the RHS to balance the flowers a little? Maybe that seagull with wings spread as in Kemishi's post. Don't think you should crop because the open space adds the right mood to your scene. From a technical view-point the shadows of all parallel (vertical) structures should also be parallel (check your 2 back legs of the bench). Looking forward to seeing the rework - don't rework it tooo much tho http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif

02-26-2000, 07:42 AM
if you felt the furniture was floating , then the flowers should overlap the furniture to anchor them. they should overlap the furniture to show depth, in any case. another option on the canvas idea would have been to sow the bright canvas top. that way the lightness of the whole deck would have had more meaning. sorlla painted many ship deck scenes with light showing thru the canvas sails. he used a very warm glow to engage the viewer to bask in the sun.....milt