I painted two good plein air studies yesterday, this is the first, “Crystal Springs, Toward the Sun”. I’m currently reading Emille Grupe’s text on painting, and in it he writes about the color of the sky. Art teachers will tell you about the color of the sky and how it changes from horizon (light blue-gree) to zenith (blue-violet), but not many talk about painting into the sun. He described a technique whereby he starts with a light orange glaze on white canvas, then, if necessary, cover lightly with blue. This technique is simlar to one I’ve seen Camille Przwodek use. She gets brilliant skys.

This also reminds me of a painting I did facing the sun the last day of the “Gold Country Plein Air” show at The Vault Gallery in Sonora. I painted a lemon yellow sky. I was painting with good friends Andy Skaff and Stan Robbins and remember Andy saying he’d never paint a blue sky again! If you want to represent the intensity of the sky the warmest colors do it. I use Hansa Yellow and Titanium White.

Crystal Springs, Toward the Sun – Oil on Linen – 6×8


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