Oil on masonite panel, 8×10″ (Larger)
Sunday my painting class with Elio painted at a beautiful spot in the Oakland hills. Lake Temescal is actually a reservoir surrounded by trees, hills and park, just off Highway 24 and perched right on the Hayward earthquake fault. It was a lovely foggy morning when we arrived, and as the day progressed, the sun peeked out from behind clouds. Joggers, families, dogs and fisherman wandered by, also enjoying the springlike weather.
I’m happy that much of what I’ve been studying and learning about oil painting, perspective, color, landscape, composition, etc. is starting to make sense and I’m finding ways of working that feel good to me. I got a lot bolder with color in this painting, starting off painting freely with really strong colors, knowing that I could adjust and tone them down once I got everything blocked in.
I tried to make myself finish the painting within a 2-3 hour window so that I wouldn’t be painting a scene that had completely changed as the time passed and sun moved overhead.
Then Elio did a demonstration and explained how he using color temperature (going from a warm yellow green to a medium green to a cool blue green) to create the illusion of form and depth on a tree. The greens were pretty close in value but their color temperature changes really moved the warm part of the tree forward and the cool part back, making it look very round and full. The really cool part was that I understood what he doing and saying; previously it just seemed like magic.