Thursday, July 12, 2012

JUGGLING BACKLIGHT AND ILLUMINATION

Morning Pool    18x14     oil on linen panel
I frequently stumble into choosing to paint this kind of subject, because they're always so dramatic when encountered. Backlighting gives us the chance to make the most of the color harmony in the shadows.  Illumination is when the light source shines through a semi-translucent object, such as the leaves on trees, and I love the feeling of the light and bright color.

I was three quarters of the way through this one when I found myself struggling to bring the painting to a close.  "What's the problem?", I thought.  Ahh!  It's the value relationships.  I had to go back through all the shapes and carefully "key" the values so that the shadows were light enough to reveal their colors, and the hi-lights were high enough to produce the effect of illumination.

This one almost got away.  VALUES ARE KEY!  You can wind up in a big disappointing mess if you fail to plan the value range needed to pull off an effect.  

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