For this study I chose a photo from our Grand Teton National Park trip that had strong value contrast between the trees/reflection and ground/distant mountain. While value was my main focus of the painting, I did spend more time planning out how I want the eye to travel around it than I have in the past. So as I was working on the notan and value shapes, I looked for ways to increase contrast in the primary spots that would be on that path.
One example of how this played out was where there’s a snow patch behind the two tree tops in the upper left section. That’s not where the snow was in the reference photo, but I thought it would help create balance and interest to make that an area of high contrast.
I built my color palette around a pair of complementary colors, plus a yellow:
- Prussian blue
- transparent earth red
- sap green
- alizarin permanent
- Winsor lemon
- titanium white
I found this palette challenging to get good warms. Which makes sense because of how cool most of the colors lean. I probably would have better luck replacing the Winsor lemon with cad yellow light. This was my first time using the new tube of Prussian blue…I’m not sure how I feel about it yet. Next time I use it I’ll try it with some warmer-leaning colors