A View Back

Sometimes a painting is about a feeling as much as it is about the subject - which is what I tried to capture with my latest painting. 

Martha wanted to refresh her kitchen with a special painting, and asked me to capture the view out of the back of her house. The spot itself is beautiful, but I know it means much more to Martha than a nice vista. It is also about family and memories and the peaceful, quiet feeling of the place.  It is this peaceful, quiet feeling that I focused on.

 

When painting a scene like this, picking the right composition is key.  I wanted to get the full view but also wanted to make it so that no one part of the painting overwhelms everything else.  Certainly, the shed should stand out, but setting it off to the side and subduing the colors helps it blend more into the whole painting and allows your eye to move around to the other elements of the scene.  Editing is also important.  While a painting like this needs to be accurate, there are things like a corner of a fence and another much larger wood pile that I omitted because they would have detracted from the overall composition.

 

Another key focus of this painting was the colors.  To create the quiet mood, I needed to avoid vivid colors.  Using an overcast fall day helped, but I greyed back the colors even further than the original photo to make a final piece that doesn’t reach out and grab the viewer so much as it subtlety pulls the viewer in.

 

The small, digital version I have here doesn’t quite have the same impact as the 18”x24” original, but I hope you enjoy spending some time taking in the feeling of the painting as much as I enjoyed painting it.

 The original photo

The original photo

 The final painting

The final painting