Thursday, April 16, 2009

What's wrong with this painting?

I was in such a hurry to paint out since it was sunny and fairly warm. I wanted to see if I had what I needed for plein air and was trying to keep it to a minimum.You can tell by the painting that nothing really sparked me. I was attracted to the shapes and little bit of green. But again, no passion here! I started with a toned pink 5x7 canvas panel, figured my center of interests would be the bell tower with it being the darkest dark and the lightest light and put it in the upper third cross hair. I began putting in the sky making it lighter around the bell tower. Then with a light mauve for distant trees on the left and added some on the right to get the color on the other side of the building. I failed to make a value study or even look through my red film to see the values. So all the values are off. Actually instead of going to the bell tower with the eyes and moving around the painting you just jump back and forth to the tree. I think I can fix this. It has the colors of Spring but the building needs some deeper values and the tree and blossoms need toned down. I think the tree is some sort of crabapple. Deep red leaves or blossoms sprouting. I did find I had everything I needed and it fit on my cart. I don't like 5x7. Prefer 8x10. I have a tendency to white knuckle it and it is hard to be loose working that small but time was of the essence. Will work on it. And I also see that the one limb of the tree is a direct line to the roof. That will have to be changed. There just aren't many interesting shapes in this painting so I need to look at some rules!!


  1. The thing that jumps out at me is that the tree is proportionally much larger than the building. It seems also more detailed. It catches my eye first, it's a great tree!

  2. I think different variegated values on the building would help it "pop". I never considered doing that building from that view. I like it! Judy