Creek scene study in 4 values

mid-high key study in 4 values of creek scene Mar-11-2019
Was shooting for high-key values, but apparently needed a lot more white!

Study topics

Monochromatic 4-value plan; 4 major planes of landscape painting; aerial perspective; light temperature

Process notes

Painted a 4-value study from reference photo. For color study, planned colors based on a morning light situation (yellow light/purple shadows). Aimed for a muted, high-key value structure and mixed the darkest dark to be roughly a mid-value. Blocked major shapes in with representative colors and values for each area.

4-value monochrome plan

What I learned

My attempt to go high-key missed the mark, but I still like how this study turned out. It would have helped to look more critically at the darkest value (the treeline and deep shadows of shoreline) before charging ahead with the rest of the block-in. I was trying to match the value of Gamblin’s Portland Grey Medium but it got darker than that.

It was also interesting to see that even though I was muting my color mixtures down quite a bit, there’s still so much color in the study.

Although I really like the feeling of autumn in the scene, once again my morning light comes across more as evening light. Maybe a neutral, mid-day light would be a good next step.

The reflection on the water was fun to work on — and I especially like that area in the lower right where I mixed an intermediate color to soften the edge between the reflection of the grasses and the water.