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Work in progress

The scene I'm painting is more expansive than what I'm showing here, but this is where I am so far.  I haven't hit on the right ocean color yet, the water needs more texture.  The green is just an underpainting for the leaves.  What I like about this photo is the warm and cool light.  I'll add some more blue to the planter wall with a glaze.  I also need to work on my edges to better convey depth of field. I'm really trying to match my colors. I started this painting 'pre-Mark'


  • Moving the lamp post and the banner was a good idea. :)
  • Having horizons and waterlines parallel with the bottom edge of the panel is pretty much a hard and fast rule with me. Am I wrong? In this case a really good composition and well done painting so far, could be ruined by a little thing like leaning waterways and lampposts. If this is one of those things where the camera is oblivious to level and plumb, please disregard this comment. Nice job so far. Water always picks up a little or a lot of the overhead sky color which on a sunny day is going to be a deeper blue than the sky in your line of sight.
  • Is the boat in the middle?   I feel there are a few nice things compostionwise in the photo. You might be missing some. So far, so good.
  • Thank you, Bob, I took a level to my water line and you were right, it was off a touch.  That's actually something generally Bugs me...water that runs uphill!  
  • Hi Some, no the boat isn't in the middle.  I only posted a portion of the painting, I hope to finish it this week so you'll see the rest of it soon!
  • One of the problems with painting from a photograph is the camera may not have been level to begin with. Hand held cameras especially that's why they make tripods with a built in level. The artist has to compensate for any such errors. Where the horizon is visible or there is water that spans a large portion of the picture this is critcal. Not so noticible with landscapes. Find the level and crop the bottom and top with scissors if necessary Even if you have golden lines (vertical and Horizontal) on your source, you will instinctively refer to the edges to judge Horizontal and vertical lines in your drawing/painting. Errors like that will effect the perspectives too.I hope this helps.
  • old fashioned tape and scissors works for me.
  • My painting is 18"x23" and I have a like-size print next to my panel for reference. I use a photo editing program to level and crop prior to having the photo printed.

    I've been using the trick of testing my colors directly on the print.  It cracks me up to look back at my little test swipes and see how completely off the mark I was!
  • At some point, I stop trying to copy the picture exactly, and it just becomes inspiration.  I don't need to replicate the leaves exactly, but I do think my leaves need more blue.  My greens are too warm.  I want to see greater contrast between light and shade, warm and cool. Should I make the sky a more intense blue?
  • The great disadvantage of being basically a weekend painter is not being able to keep my paints wet enough to blend my edges better.  I think it's finished.  Movin' on...
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