Sunday, June 2, 2013

Cherry Blossom View

This is another example of a before and after. The bottom painting was done from photos I shot from a cruise boat, which my husband and I took see the cherry blossoms along the Potomac River. Painting it plein air from the boat was definitely not an option.  This is a great view, but of course, it was a gray day and you can see the result above.  I think it even rained and the painting looks like a gray, gloomy day.

After looking at this painting for a number of years and finding it totally blah, I decided it needed help.  Especially the sky.  I thought a sunset painting with the Washington Monument silhouetted against it would be quite dramatic.

I began by sanding the surface of the painting so it would take the new paint well and get rid of any bumps from previous brushstrokes.  Basically the drawing is unchanged.

By using other source material that I have accumulated, I changed the sky into a sunset.  What a difference!
I darkened the trees and the cherry blossoms, and  made the water smooth with reflections.  The colors are more purple in the shadows.  I really like the painting now.  This is a good example of painting what you want to see, rather than painting what you see.

It will be at American Painting Fine Art for the exhibit "Images of Washington DC."  The gallery is located at 5118 MacArthur Blvd. NW, Washington, DC.  The reception is Saturday, June 8 from 5-7 p.m.  I'll be there with other participating artists in the Washington Society of Landscape Painters.