I painted Umbria Autumn in 2009 but recently reworked a section of the painting and eliminated the wall on the left. I took a series of photos as I worked on the painting and it makes for an interesting insight into my process.
There are twelve images shown in the slide show as follows:
- 1) Pencil Sketch - I like to do an initial sketch of a painting to help me spot design problems and to better understand the composition.
- 2) Initial Layout on the Canvas - I do a line drawing first in one color but this is a little farther into the painting with the sky already painted in.
- 3) Adding Color and Value - The depth of the painting is worked out with the values.
- 4) Working in the Background Hills - Here the richness of the colors are developed.
- 5) Completing the Foreground - The scale of the scene is established with the foreground.
- 6) Adding the Details - Getting the richness of the autumn landscape.
- 7) Refining the Details - Final touches to the mid-ground.
At this point I thought I was finished and had the painting hung in my studio. Over the next year, I started to realize that something was bothering me about the composition. I didn't like the brick wall on the left side of the painting and started to work on solutions. The next four images are different ideas I tried out on my computer using Gimp (free version of PhotoShop) even before I attempted to take brush to canvas.
- 8) Replacing the Wall with Trees - The foreground became to dominant in this version.
- 9) Extending the Cliff - This one seemed to only replace one problem (the walls) with another (the dominant cliff).
- 10) Extending the Horizon - Everything pointed right of the left side in this one.
- 11) Combination of 8, 9, and 10 - I finally decided that this was the best way to resolve the painting and made the changes to the actual painting.
- 12) Final Painting
Topics: Learning Curve
I am much happier with the latest version of the painting and hope you agree.