Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Waiting For A Subject To Appear

Many times I arrive at a location that I know well, and may have preconceived notions about what I will paint and how I will paint it.  But other times, as I told my students yesterday, I will wait a bit and see what happens or what shows up before deciding what the real subject in the scene will be.

At this location a couple of years ago, it was a woman walking her dog when a flock of geese flew by overhead.  Yesterday, I was setting up to give my students a lesson when who comes wandering by but Carlton Plummer who lives just up the road and around the corner from my summer cottage.  Carlton set up his easel on the rocky beach and began to paint, so at that moment I decided that I should paint him into the scene.

Figures often animate a landscape that would otherwise be rather lifeless and bland.  Don't rule them out as an intrusion into the beauty of nature; rather include them as an element that gives scale and interest to the locale.

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