Hay Bales 6"x8" oil on panel
I have not had much time this summer to work on my painting chops. The last three or four times I have gone out to paint, have resulted in wipers. I stepped back at some point and got a good, objective look at my painting and decided that all the CPR in the world was not going to save it... so I wiped it off. I am getting quite good at creating toned panels, though. :0) I seem to be taking two steps forward and one step back in my painting progress. Or maybe one step forward and two steps back is more like it. Painting can be a struggle.
So... I decided to go back to basics. Many years ago I took some watercolor workshops from Tony Couch. In the workshops, Tony taught me all I know about design. It was good stuff. He also POUNDED into our heads that a painting needs a fast reading VALUE PATTERN. I seem to forget this when I am outdoors and dealing with the rapidly changing light conditions and other issues.
I looked through some pictures I took recently of some hay bales and settled on a couple of them. I did some little thumbnail sketches to see them in three values. These had a very obvious value pattern. A dark background with a mid-value field and some light bales of hay. Then I went about sticking to this value plan as I painted. I think I did... and it helped me come out with a more successful painting.
Value sketches for hay bales