Southwest [Archive] - Artist Forum

: Southwest


TerryCurley
02-09-2016, 06:43 PM
I've never painted a southwest landscape before. I did this fairly quickly and I feel that it can't be done, but I'm really OK with the way it looks and don't know what I would add to it.

Susan Mulno
02-09-2016, 07:29 PM
That is very, very nice! I like it a lot!

Liz
02-09-2016, 11:38 PM
I wouldn't add anything to it, it looks good to me. Hard to believe that it was done quickly, looks like there was a lot of work put into it. Well done.

TerryCurley
02-10-2016, 04:44 AM
Thank you Susan and Liz. I guy from Arizona mentioned that I might want to add a wild flower or two. I think I might do that just for a splash of color. Nothing much.

dickhutchings
02-10-2016, 08:06 AM
Hi Terry. Love this painting. Should cactus be that green? I feel like they need to be toned down. Of course as I've found out, it could just be the photograph.

I've been experimenting with digitally adjusting my photos and it seemed to work on this morning photo.

just
02-10-2016, 09:04 AM
The cactus are all wrong with the color, proportions and shape. The sky doesn't look like what we have in Arizona. Maybe you meant it to be more of an abstract.

TerryCurley
02-10-2016, 09:10 AM
Thanks Dick. This is from a Kevin Hill tutorial and he made his cactus very green so I just followed his lead. I'm guessing cactus are really lighter or darker?

One picture attached is my painting with the tweaking I just did and the other is the tutorial picture. Yeah I went rough on it. I couldn't get the spoiler feature to work.

Darn it -- seems I can only upload one picture to a post at a time. What's with that!

dickhutchings
02-10-2016, 09:10 AM
Whatever you do just , don't try to be diplomatic.:biggrin: We wouldn't recognize you.

TerryCurley
02-10-2016, 09:29 AM
Sure why not Just -- it's an impression of the Southwest.

BTW how would you change the cactus. Saying it's not right doesn't help me improve. This is one of the reference photos.

Amazing how Arizona has a different sky...and here I thought we all had the same. I guess you are meaning it should be darker because of clearer air? Or Lighter because of the bright sunshine? You're not helpful by just saying it's wrong Just. Please be more specific.

And yes I would not believe it was you without the curtness.

dickhutchings
02-10-2016, 09:51 AM
Funny looking things aren't they? I have never been to Arizona or any other state that has deserts and cacti.

I see a lot of lines in these that are missing from your painting. Maybe you don't want to get that much detail in the distant ones but maybe your foreground ones to make them more believable. More shadow. I know you said this was just a quick one, do you plan to do another one in more detail?

just
02-10-2016, 10:03 AM
Terry I am glad that you asked. Using the reference photo you can see the vertical ridges of the saguaro cacti by the shading. Also, the arms of yours don't look natural. They come out of the cacti too high are too big and at the wrong angle. In the desert there are dead, dying and injured saguaros. That have spine showing. The prickly pear cactus is the wrong size in comparison. As for the sky, it is not necessarily the same all over the world. I know that the one you painted looks wrong for the desert.

dickhutchings
02-10-2016, 10:08 AM
Maybe Kevin Hill hasn't ever been to the desert either:biggrin: Terry's sky matches his. I went searching for his tutorial which is why I know.

TerryCurley
02-10-2016, 10:44 AM
Yeah I never have been to the desert either. I was following Kevin's lead and he did not put any lines on the cacti so I didn't either.

Honestly I'm not upset that it is not exactly correct. My main goal was to work on my lighting and shading and just try to get something close. I will do another like it and take more care on cacti.

On the next painting how would I improve the sky? Some clouds? Darker or lighter blue, purple tint, what?

just
02-10-2016, 11:38 AM
The sky should be bluer lower to the horizon. If those are clouds in the distance on the horizon, then they should be lit as such. If they are the wispy kind, there should be more sky seen through them. Your lighting isn't consistent. The shadows don't add up.

dickhutchings
02-10-2016, 11:42 AM
Hmm... I see the light coming from the right and shadow on the left. There should be more to it than that?

just
02-10-2016, 12:17 PM
Hmm... I see the light coming from the right and shadow on the left. There should be more to it than that?

Yes. There should be consistency with the angels and length of the shadows. There are some things not shadowed at all . Some things that appear to be lit from different angles.

leighann
02-10-2016, 02:33 PM
I found this pic...is this more correct??

I've only been to Arizona once twice, and only paid attention to how blooming hot it was. :vs_laugh:

TerryCurley
02-10-2016, 03:32 PM
Oooo I like this reference photo Leighann. If I do another desert scene I will use it or at least part of it.

Now that I think about I was in the desert last Sept. I was in Virginia City NV. It wasn't too hot then but my lips and skin cracked from the dryness. I can't imagine living in that dryness.

Liz
02-10-2016, 11:35 PM
Part of a good painting is knowing what to leave out. Adding lines to the cactus would make the painting look too busy and probably why the instructor didn't add it to his painting either.

Susan Mulno
02-11-2016, 10:00 AM
Besides, we need to decide what look we are going for in the first place. Is it realism? Then this is way off. Is it abstract? No. I would classify your desert scene as folk art. One of my favorite styles btw.

dickhutchings
02-11-2016, 10:18 AM
Good call.

Besides, we need to decide what look we are going for in the first place. Is it realism? Then this is way off. Is it abstract? No. I would classify your desert scene as folk art. One of my favorite styles btw.

TerryCurley
02-11-2016, 12:39 PM
OK honestly it was realism I was going for not impressionism but didn't know how to answer Just's remarks. I really hate categories. I followed a tutorial. This is not my original composition. I guess I'm just not good yet at realism and I can accept that. But I'm not going to stop trying, and I'm better than I was a year ago . I will post a side by side if I can. But please don't scrutinize how it is not like the original because I know that. I can see my cacti are too plentiful. I know now they are an unrealistic shape. I can see that my mountains are not the same shape. I can see that my picture is a lot brighter (that was intentional) and I intentionally added things that were not in the original. And I know I made sort of a pathway that was not in the original.

Geeeze I feel like I just got out of the confessional like when I was a kid and a practicing Catholic, and full of guilt.

dickhutchings
02-11-2016, 12:44 PM
That's good Terry. Now we can discuss it with all the facts known. I'll start...






:vs_wave:

dickhutchings
02-11-2016, 12:51 PM
I'd like to see the sky fade in a little better like in the ref but keep it light if that's what you want. A different time of day. Lets see, what else?
A few of the cactus arms stick too far before sweeping up.
Tone down the light green some.
That's it for me. If I was painting it, this is what I would do.

TerryCurley
02-11-2016, 12:52 PM
Not sure how to take that Dick. I don't want to be compared to the original. I think just copying someone's painting or any photo is not what I want to do. I feel I want to personalize my art and not be compared to how close it is to the teacher's painting.

dickhutchings
02-11-2016, 01:07 PM
And I agree that you should do that and this painting shows that it yours. I'm just thinking if you would like it a little more realistic, it seems to need those tweaks. I would never expect anyone to make an exact copy of something. It's a personal thing with me. I feel I can learn more if I can do an exact copy because I'm forced to learn to mix and blend the colors and get shapes right. I have a long way to go, please take my advice with a grain of salt. What the heck does that mean? Put some salt on my advice? Really!!

TerryCurley
02-11-2016, 02:33 PM
I'll tweak some today. I'm working on something else right now. I'm thinking about putting up a WIP but I'm actually afraid. I feel so insecure about everything.

TerryCurley
02-11-2016, 06:17 PM
More realistic?

dickhutchings
02-11-2016, 08:53 PM
Yes. It's prettier also.

just
02-11-2016, 09:23 PM
Yes I agree. I bet that your next southwestern scene will be even better.

TerryCurley
02-12-2016, 06:43 AM
I know it's more realistic now but I can't help but feel it is drab with not much color. I think if I ever do another desert scene it will be more surreal and I will exaggerate the colors by using purple and yellow and reds.

SHIKANTH MOHUNLAL
04-12-2016, 06:02 AM
This is great