Tuesday: The end of a fulfilling journey

Bryce Herrington

Gallery: Tuesday, blog
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I work into the closer trees on the right; these will establish the core of the reflections in the pond. On these trees, there is more detail in the branches, but I still need to keep it loose…back to careful randomness! I work fast here, spontaneity being the key. I’m using only Davy’s Gray and Indigo Blue now. I will use only four pigments throughout this painting; I am focusing on the subtle interplay ofthese colors to achieve the mood I want.
Winter scenes obviously do not have the endless variations of color and tone as say, a spring scene would have, but it is not that simple. The effect of the subdued winter light makes it extremely important to study and recognize the subtle variations it creates in the landscape, and use these to infuse the painting with life and feeling.
Keeping it simple, adding and subtracting as I feel, I move through this phase fairly quickly.

Tuesday 3

Now that the foundation has been established to my satisfaction, I enter the final phase, building on the foundation to bring this painting to completion. This always takes the longest amount of time, and I proceed with care. I don’t want to lose the spontaneity I achieved with the previous work, but I also want to tighten up and clarify the elements into a cohesive whole. It is about balance and harmony.

I concentrate first on the larger buildings on either side, intensifying color, and lighting, bringing out details. Then I work on the buildings and houses in the middle distance, again bridging the space between the two prominent masses of shapes and colors on either side.

I work on the snow last. I want to have the mood, lighting and color all set before I tie it all together with the snow. It is this area that will make or break the painting, and it must be done with excellence and integrity. I put form and lighting in the snow using colors I used in the sky. I work very carefully and deliberately on the tire and foot tracks, slowly building detail.

When I am at this stage of any painting, I spend equal time evaluating and painting. I step back from the easel often, to look at each detail, each element and see how it all contributes to the whole. You cannot rush this. I add, then stop and evaluate, add and evaluate over and over, until I am satisfied this painting has achieved the vision I initially had for it.

I am very happy with this painting, I feel I achieved the goals I set for it. It was a great challenge and a very fulfilling journey. Thanks for joining me as I worked.