Heaven's River Park, 7x 5½" canvas board study

edited September 12 in Post Your Paintings
Trying to sort of up my game with some studies, the idea is not to take too long on them or get bogged down in detail. Here's one I just finished of Tianhe Park, in Tianmu, Taipei City.  As you can see, I've cropped in from the reference.  Any feedback would be great.  Thanks for taking a look.

Ref. photo



  • You’ve captured the scene well with a clean and effective technique.  I like the bright upbeat feel.  It’s an uplifting painting.
  • You've got the right colours and values happening there, @Gary_Heath. It's a vibrant little study. If you decide to make a bigger panting of this subject you would no doubt make a careful drawing to help with form. 
  • I think you have captured the light and sunny day extremely well.  However, the first thing that struck me was that the roof appeared to be a building in the background.  More of a shadow under the roof would help.  Your colors are lovely and vibrant.
  • Great colours.   Really vibrant and cheery.  I am sorry if my critique is a bit off, as I am viewing this with one eye, having stabbed the other yesterday on a rose bush.

    Agree with shadow under the roof.   Perhaps slightly cleaner lines on the columns would smarten it up?

    Mainly, I am tending to focus on the bright foliage in the background which I feel is more like the colour of the foreground foliage in the photo.    The foreground foliage in the photo has a yellow green where the light hits it, and you have done more of a blue green.     If you used the same yellow green you have in the background for the front, and had more opaque greenery in that patch of sun at the back, it may look a bit more balanced?
    As I say, I could be seeing this all wrongly with only one eye.  I am sorry if that is the case.
    I think you chose a great subject and if you do a studio work, I will enjoy seeing it.
  • @GTO, Thank you.  Glad it affected you in some way. The park has many memories for me. @tassieguy yup agreed.  I did draw it out twice by pencil using a grid beforehand.  I get better results with a proportional divider though. The pavilion would need a much more careful treatment if upscaled. @oilpainter, Thanks. Glad you like the colours.  I have been influenced by Ian Roberts recently.  Yes, always check shadows! @toujours, thank you so much for those observations. I find studies are useful for working these things out.  The greens are not quite balanced I can see now.  Hope your eye is better, sounds nasty.

  • @Gary_Heath, Yes, the eye turned out to be worse than initially thought, but better than it could have been.   Down to one eye with a cataract for the next few weeks, so my calendar series may be the last I do for a while.    Pity, I was having fun getting back into painting.  Yes, Ian Roberts has been a good influence on many I think.
  • Nice, and very nice when I saw the subject.

    Something I would do is unclutter all the posts on the right, either leave some out (said from the perspective of a timberframer, but even I can't exactly tell what structure they are supporting, the roof looks square enough, while all those posts support seemingly an inner beam structure, and an outer one, one can't tell in the photo even.  The problem is one doesn't want to take them out and end up with even more questions.  So I would try to get the values right, the dark poles in the photo are not nearly dark enough in the painting.

    If you look at the green circle, that is the single darkest area on your painting, when it isn't even the single darkest area in that cluster of poles.   I had fun because I picked up my red values specs and the whole scene changed a lot.  Your painting has only two darks in the building, one in the green area and the figure is also very dark. Much of the rest is very even in value, but not in the photo.  It's all a choice, it just stood out to me.

  • edited September 14
    @TamDeal, very good point, thank you.  The pillars do need some work obviously.  Since the pavilion is the centre of interest, they should be accurate actually. Yup, a greater range of values is needed; I was pulling my darks for sure.  Shadow bottom right was not dark enough, but as soon as I darkened it that quadrant suddenly looked fine. I'll re-touch this study and post the new version soon.  Thanks to one and all, really appreciate it. @toujours hope your eye speedily recovers and look forward to seeing more of your work in due course.
  • Nice…I’ve been kicking around the idea of some really quickly done paintings also. Glad to see you’re doing it. Carry on!
  • edited September 25
    Thanks to everyone who made comments and suggestions above--I've tried to act on them.  Drawing probably lets me down.  But the revised tones have hopefully have made this pictorial a bit more subtle.  I feel it was a worthwhile exercise.  Sorry for the glare on the quickly taken photo (my original effort below so you can compare without scrolling all the way to the top of this thread.)

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