Painting light accurately can be a challenge in landscape painting.
by Shawn Gould
|Reflecting at Sunset
2006, acrylic, 24 x 24.
This is a beautiful painting with nice light, however the sun's highlight is a little too bright. Since the light falls in the center of the composition, it becomes too much of a focal point and prevents the eye from moving through the scene. The artist should also consider making the shadow lighter in the center of the painting, especially between the trees.
Given the light source, there should be some light passing through the trees, which creates more defined shadows across the ground. The reflection on the water is effective, but the warm ochre color on the right seems out of place with the color of the trees. The artist may also want to add a few more details to the foreground grass to make it less distracting.
About the Critic
Shawn Gould, a native of Iowa now residing in Northern California, studied biological illustration at Iowa State University, in Ames, and at the University of California, Santa Cruz. “It was a compromise,” he explains. “I felt I had to come out of school able to make a living, and this was the closest I felt I could get to becoming a fine artist.” During his illustration career he did biological and natural-history illustrations for the National Geographic Society and the National Audubon Society, among other organizations. Gould is a member of The Society of Animal Artists and is represented by Legends Fine Art Gallery, in Great Bend, Kansas, and Humboldt Artworks, in Arcata, California. For more information on Gould, visit his website at www.shawngould.com.
Would you like one of your paintings critiqued? Email it to us!
One of the most useful aspects of painting workshops is the personalized critiques offered by knowledgeable instructors. Now you can get this advantage anytime through American Artist Critiques.
Careful readers of our new quarterly publication, Workshop, have noticed that many of that magazine's in-depth articles feature critiques of paintings. Through our new online service, you can get commentary and suggestions on your new work by simply e-mailing a high-resolution scan to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We'll select the most instructional from the received submissions and send it to an expert artist for advice. Each week, we'll post another critiqued painting or drawing on our website.
Please send scanned images as JPEGs no larger than 2mb with with the title of the artwork, year, medium, and dimensions. Limit: 3 submissions per person every 90 days. We will not notify those selected for critiquing, nor will we notify those not selected. Submission of artwork to the e-mail address email@example.com constitutes permission to reproduce your painting or drawing, online or in print, in conjunction with this service.
Tap into the experience and knowledge of our featured artists today. Submit your artwork to: firstname.lastname@example.org.