Saturday, 13 November 2010

Letort Falls by Julie Riker

11x14 oil

We couldn't have asked for a more perfect November day to paint together at this location.  I tackled this day with a larger canvas than my usual and chose what proved to be a challenging view of the falls.  When I started painting a large part of the falls was shaded by a tree  behind me and I tried to capture that cooler light as well as the motion of the water.  This is pretty much how the falls looked from my vantage point, but I am trying to decide if eliminating some of the rocks in the lower right and toward center area might make this a better painting.  Any suggestions?


9 comments:

Cathy Mabius said...

Julie, I might consider, instead of eliminating rocks in lower right, linking the dark shapes together a bit -- by enlarging a few of the rocks and having some overlap and not having "white water" between all the rocks. It would simplify and quiet the lower right allowing more emphasis on your focal point. Just a suggestion -- you as welcome to ignore it as take it ! I do like how you painted the rushing water in upper/mid left that I read as your focal point...

Julie Riker said...

Ahh yes! So good to have another set of eyes! Thank you Cathy for your honest and insightful comment! I really appreciate a good critique and rarely can get it. I will have to work on this painting some more, but I don't know if I can post the finished product as it will no longer be plein air.
I was thinking that someone should start a blog for artist to artist critiques, where you would post things that you know need some work and are looking for constructive feeback on. I know that I would find that helpful....

Cathy Mabius said...

Julie, I think it can still be considered plein air. There are different definitions as to percentage done in field and finishing touches in the studio, but I think you only need a couple of things to do in corner to solve the area that bothered you and it is still 80% done in the field. -- don't get carried away (leave the center of the painting alone IMHO.) You have a good painting going.

Cecelia Lyden said...

Julie--how lucky you are to have the benefit of Cathy's eyes--you know how I feel about critiquing--I need it and welcome it--Your water is moving and splashing along-very realistic.

Claire Beadon Carnell said...

Julie, Cathy has given you excellent advice. Something I like to do if I am struggling with composition is to take a digital picture, then convert it to black and white. It helps me see where I need to emphasize or de-emphasize values, as well as seeing how my eye moves through the painting without the distraction of color.

Be careful for what you wish for...When we painted this past Thursday I told Pat Koscienski that I am seriously thinking of creating a critique blog for the SVPAP painters...but will not get start on it until after my classes end next week. It's nice to get the kudos for our work, but I want this to be a place where we can post our work (complete or in-progress) for an objective criticism, and following the standards for critique. What do you think?

Julie Riker said...

Claire, I would love that! Though it is always nice to hear praise of my work, I get plenty of that from friends and family. I know some people are more sensitive about criticism than others. Myself...I love it and feel it helps me to be more self critical..which is hard to do after spending hours in front of a painting. I had many tough critiques in art school but now I rarely get any constructive feedback. So Cathy, I am so happy you stepped up!
I know some people did not want this blog to become a critique blog so I am sorry if I crossed any boundries.
And I guess if we are refining our plein air paintings we have to decide at what point they are no longer plein air...

Cecelia Lyden said...

OK-I'll chime in again--I hope I "don't eat my words", but I want to improve my painting and would like an opportunity to hear some constructive advice--perhaps a separate section of the blog, "An Artist's Eye" or "A Different Approach" or "What Do You Think?"--some place where an artist can list his name and the work that he/she wants to be critiqued--and other artists can give their advice right then and there--Let's do it! Who wants to be FIRST>

Claire Beadon Carnell said...

We have discussed getting together to meet once a month for critiques, but it is almost impossible with everyone's schedules. This is why I thought I would incorporate some kind of open critique into the blog. It could be as simple as someone putting key words in their post so that the other artists would know that this artist wants critique...I also appreciate it, and learn so much from critique on anyone's work.
Think it is time to send out an email to all SVPAP members to get a consensus.

Catherine Stone said...

Guys...I really welcome the critique idea...live or in the blog...and as well, a discussion of time or percentage in the field compared to studio to be considered "plein air" as I am a newbie....please continue...and thanks Claire, looks like you got the critique section up quickly!