Saturday, January 16, 2016

Painting Water

12x12 Oil on stretched Canvas
Original Available

This coastal Maine painting depicts the time of day near noon. A slight breeze was in the air and the water was calm.
To my dear friends who are learning to paint this year, here are a few basic tips for painting water and coastal scenes:
Examine the colors – Notice the changes from the shore to other areas. In this setting, the color appeared light purple in shallow water and darker in the distance.

Express the time of day – While sunsets and sunrises may produce dramatic shadows and amber tones, direct sunlight reduces them. During the daytime without cloud coverage, the sky is normally a different shade of blue than the water.
Paint reflections – Reflections of boats and other objects create areas of interest. Depending upon your viewing angle, the length will vary. Clarity of reflections also defines the character of the current.
Sense of depth – The position of islands, boats, and horizon line can affect the viewer’s perception of depth. Think about the layers and focal point. You can place details in one section and obscure  elements in another.
Express the mood – Before starting, determine the theme and mood. Select a color palette and base coat that matches the feeling you are trying to create. Whether you are painting plein air or from photographs, edit the composition to remove distractions, rather than attempting to include everything that is visible.

There are many books and videos available on the topic. These a just a few to get you started :)  
Enjoy the process!

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