Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A Simple Solution For Featuring A Dominant Shape

Spring Hill    6x8    oil
This is one of the plein air studies I did this past weekend, near Johnson City.  This place is loaded with wonderful suggestions for landscape design.

My objective in this study was to create a design that would support my focal area (the tree grouping atop the hill).

I guess I could have just cropped-in to feature the trees as the dominant mass, but I wanted the feeling of their relationship to the rugged hill and the Bluebonnets in the meadow below.  So, I decided to create a larger pattern of darks than were actually in the scene by grouping more of the naturally occurring foliage. I included my focus trees as the dominant shape in that configuration.  If you just add a bunch of other unrelated filler shapes of foliage you end up with a scattered, busy pattern that doesn't support the main concept of your painting.  It helps to keep the light and dark patterns simple while reinforcing the dominant elements, like line, shape, direction, color, and texture.  I can see this one going to a larger painting.

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