Around the Bend in Paradise- 9×12 Oil by Greg Newbold

So, yesterday I posted about painting with Josh Clare and shared some of the insights I gleaned from him. I had all those ideas fresh in my head as I set out after the morning demo discussion to make a little painting. Josh was really excited about the lighting conditions being mostly overcast. I have to admit that flat diffused light has never been my first choice. I am always looking and hoping for more dramatic light and shadow situations to paint, so this was a bit of a challenge for me.

We all drove to a stretch of riverfront in Avon, the hamlet adjacent to Paradise owned by Josh’s friend and I set out to find the perfect vista. I wanted something that would present a composition that had both a variety of values as well as some dynamic lines. I decided to give this particular bend in the river a try. The river turns and separates around a couple of gravel bars and there were some nice areas of contrast between the bleached out log jams and the shadowy underside of the willows and trees. I set up in the trees and got to work.

For the most part the light stayed remarkably consistent over the two and a half hours that I painted and I soon gained an appreciation for Josh’s passionate endorsement of overcast light. I don’t think I will have such an aversion to painting on cloudy days in the future. About halfway through my effort, Josh swung by and gave me a few pointers on the progress of my painting and even put down a few strokes to show me what he was talking about. I forged ahead and think the end result is pretty successful. I will be touching it up a bit in studio to pull it all together, but overall, it was a good day and a good effort. I learned a lot and made some mini breakthroughs regarding the process I have been using to lay down paint.