The above is my painted sketch from Painting Outside! in White’s Woods on Friday, Jun 25, ‘10.
I can tell by the B&W copy that my initial value pattern worked well as every element – woods in the near background, pine forest in the far, back field in the middle ground, large trunk and foliage, with picnic table on the far side of the foreground, behind the tree shadow and the field in the near foreground between the bottom edge of the paper to the near edge of the cast tree shadow. The color scheme of UB, CR and CY doesn’t work too well for me in this painting as I feel that it’s overall, too yellow; I remember the day as being cooler, more blue/green. It was a warm day, the sky was an opaque and dull blue. A day of Medium Tone. As I recall, the shadow appeared to be very cool, while the shadow in this painting seems to me too warm and light. The picnic table, shadow and bulk of the trunk and foliage are 3 of the elements that to me, gave drama to a scene of Serenity. The picnic table barely shows in the color version and not much better in the B&W.
I decided, rather than re-work the original sketch, I’d begin a complete new painting copied from the original Thumbnail except this time I’d do it in Prussian Blue (PB), Alizarin Crimson (AC), and Aureolin Yellow (AU), instead of the Ultramarine Blue (UB), Cadmium Red (CR) and Cadmium Yellow (CY) I used in the original painted sketch I did that day.
On the painting I did on the spot, I demonstrated how white chalk can set up a masking barrier when I used it on the white horizontal line under the tree representing ‘picnic table top.’ In this painting, I used liquid frisket.
Of the 2 paintings, I’m happier with the 2nd as representative of my perceptions as to how I viewed that scene that day. It’s difficult to actually see the picnic table but it is there, after the eye casts about the painting & identifies it. In the glare of the sun that day, I also found it hard to see but when I recognized it, felt it belonged in the scene to complete the sense of serenity and brightness of the day. It wasn’t so much about ‘picnic table’ as it was about an element that completed the story of lawn, huge tree and shadow, background forests and pines, and made the scene inviting, to a person seeking a picnic spot and to artists who see such things as having importance, a human value, a beauty worth recording.