Tuesday, February 23, 2010

A Place that could be Almost Anywhere...

Another scene from central Colorado. This is a photo of Willow Creek west of Poncha Springs. As the title suggests what attracted me is the near universal appeal. Little streams like this can be found everywhere and capturing something that so many can can connect with can result in a more powerful painting than a specific place like, say, the Grand Canyon. The first challenge with the scene is that it's too complicated. I would have to simplify the shapes into larger masses and save the details for the center of interest. The next challenge is the stream itself. I've had little instruction on how to paint water but have found that it's a tricky balance between painting the colors exactly as you see them (water is not always blue) and exaggerating colors, especially cool ones (like blue!) Then there is that gray log. I wanted it in there but it would have to be seriously toned down to not draw too much attention. The last touch was punching the contrast and color where the creek disappears in the distance.

Willow Creek, 6 x 8, oils

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