Painting Into the Night - Class Notes

Beginning in September, my Thursday morning class painted out in the crisp days of fall while the Tuesday night class took up the challenge of evening and low light painting. Over the course of 6 weeks (one rain out) we let the night fall. Shown here are my 6"x 8" paintings.
I purposefully painted
small in order to stay loose
and intentional.
You can see the progression
of fading light in each piece
and the sense of values eclipsing
color. At first, it was a case of hanging on to the light, trying to capture the last moments of the day as it faded to twilight. Each week the painting time got shorter as we headed to the inevitable: full on evening.
This last Tuesday was our last night out and a hardy group met in downtown Alamosa to finally face the dark. We looked for very simple views: a building, a street lamp and tree.
Town scenes can be complex but ambient light is a big help to seeing your pallet, and your canvas. I am not a fan of using a light, such as a head lamp or clip on light, but prefer to let my eyes naturally adjust to a low light situation. Standing in a store doorway can offer the benefit of shop light or a street lamp can do the job. We painted for about an hour before diving into the SLV Brewery to warm up and wait for snow.
These little studies aren't much to write home about but in this case the accomplishment was in the doing; and the best part is - we aren't afraid of the dark anymore.


Judith Greenwood said...

Your downtown is definitely night!! Nice going!! What a difficult series of assignments that all was, but great learning curve for all of us.
Thanks for the opportunities, Judith

eldon warren said...

All nice little paintings. Don't ya just love doing them? There are times when it seem they are more pleasurable than the ones we take so much time with. Second from the top is my favorite.