|Mini color study, “Storm Coming” 3×4 oil on paper|
OK, I’m officially spending way more time than I want on these mini color studies. This happens to me a lot, where I overcomplicate something that was meant to be simple and focused. These aren’t about rendering detail or good brushwork — but it’s like the lure of the siren song!
Time to get back to my original goal: mixing good color palettes and working within the value structure I set up in my thumbnails.
This is based on the same basic scene I used in yesterday’s mini color study, of a storm gathering over the mountains in Yellowstone. For this one, I thought more about cool light and warm shadows, and working within a relatively narrow value zone due to the diffused light from the dark clouds overhead. I like the silvery-grey light that illuminates the landscape during weather like this.
There are little bits of dark maroon in some of the shadows of the upright elements and a dull orange in the foreground grasses that I enjoyed adding. I’m having a lot of fun exploring the idea of enhancing greens with violets, mauves, and oranges.
|Reference photo taken along Blacktail Plateau Drive in Yellowstone National Park|
|Value thumbnail of simple shapes|
|Black and white value check of my color study|
I think my values have strayed too much from my original plan, and it’s losing a sense of depth. I’d need to look at adjusting this if I took it to a larger painting, maybe starting with a new thumbnail.