Design study 2 (3-A-Week Challenge)

8×10 study in design

I chose a photo from our Yellowstone trip for this study in design. The full photo is an amazing view that stretches for miles and includes a dramatic cloudy sky, but for this study I cropped down to the land and put the focus on the road leading back into the scene. It’s hard to tell, but the blue at the top isn’t sky — it’s another layer of mountains turned blue from atmospheric perspective.

My focus was to move some elements around in order to create a visual path that zig zags from foreground to background. I used saturation to describe the different planes by making things more intense in the foreground and grey in the background.

This was an interesting subject because it was overcast while we were there, so the diffused light reduced the value contrast. After seeing the photo of the study, I think I could have gone more grey with a lot of the colors, especially in the mid ground.

main shapes

I forgot to do the values of the the main shapes in my planning stage this time. If I had, it probably would have revealed the challenges from the diffused lighting. But I was pretty fixated on using this photo as reference because I loved it so much. The shapes I drew in the planning stage aren’t even that interesting — it’s a good example of a time when falling in love with the subject doesn’t necessarily make for a good design!

My color palette was based on pairs of complements:

  • sap green + cadmium yellow light for lighter values
  • transparent earth red
  • alizarin permanent
  • ultramarine blue