original landscape painting, oils, roads, 6x6
Travels Abroad #1
oil on wood panel
Travels Abroad #2
oil on wood panel
Before embarking on larger paintings based on the Butler Wash/Cedar Mesa trip, I decided I had to do the Daily Paintworks German Landscape challenge for this week. Host Carol Marine offered two photos, both taken during her trip to Germany. And, even though I don't usually paint from reference photos that aren't my own, I couldn't resist these.
Why? Two reasons: 1) they have roads, which I have an irresistible urge to paint; 2) the snapshots themselves had inherently good design - simple, abstract shapes and good range of values. As the basis for a painting, they were ideal.
My personal challenge with these was to more or less abandon the local color (summer green...not my favorite color, and besides, everyone else is doing them in green) and go with some different palettes for each. And, to simplify-simplify-simplify.
The palette I used was somewhat random: alizarin crimson, cadmium orange, Indian yellow, burnt sienna, brown madder, cobalt blue hue. Actually, the brown madder was the random addition to the palette.
They were fun little paintings, both done last night, save for some tweaking on #2 this morning. Originally, I had long shadows going across the road in #2, even though they aren't in the reference photo. I wasn't sure about them, so I showed Wayne, because despite the fact he says he isn't qualified to offer opinions on art, he's nothing but brutally honest: "I don't like the shadows - it looks like sewage is running across the road." After I stopped laughing, I went down and changed it. Despite what he might think, I'm actually really grateful for his opinions. Hopefully, it looks better now.
Some random photos from our Utah trip from the first day after our hikes:
Casa Del Eco Mesa, with the San Juan river cutting across the valley.
San Juan river
Two rafts await a private river trip in the morning
Monument Valley to the southwest, as seen from Hwy 163
Two buttes in Valley of the Gods catch late afternoon sun
Sunset in the town of Bluff, UT