Friday, October 02, 2009

Rio Chama Pano - Beginning


I know, you can hardly see this sketch on the watercolor paper. But, it is there. If you click on the photo, though, you can maybe see a few lines. I was at the Art Club and had my small camera I keep in my art cart and it doesn't pick up some of the details like my big camera. I just loosely sketched the mountains and river shape onto the paper. The resource photo was a panorama I stitched together from 10 photos while on our recent trip to Chama, NM. Barb and Charlie Lang were with us on this day and, while the scenery was colorful and gorgeous, it was nowhere near as colorful as I made this underpainting. I was having so much fun painting with my art buddies again (after seven weeks!) that I just kept choosing this color and that, merely because they looked "pretty" on the palette.

This painting will go into a 12x36-inch frame, as all panoramas should!

I completed the underpainting during this painting session. For some reason, I think I want to paint the rest of this with gouache. I have not painted with gouache for several years and want to give it a try again. I have recently seen some of Gary Keimig's landscapes done in gouache and it inspired me to drag out my paints to do that again. I was so sorry to hear of Gary's fall and need for surgery, this will mean months of his not being able to get out and about and painting more of his plein air landscapes of the West. Heal quickly, Gary!

I also have gotten Aubrey-in-the-Tutu down on watercolor paper, but will wait until I finish this one to start that. The day after I got the landscape sketched onto w/c paper, the Watercolor Workshop announced the theme for this month's project painting....landscapes with rivers, streams, etc. so since my timing for sketching this painting was so timely I will finish this one first. Sorry, Aubrey!

4 comments:

The Weaver of Grass said...

Your colours are so beautiful Susan - look forward to seeing it at a later date. Have a pleasant painting weekend.

RHCarpenter said...

I love this painting!!! It looks as if Georgia O'Keeffe herself could have painted this scene, Susan and since she's one of my all time fave painters, that's a compliment, indeed, to your skill and talent. I love that you chose so many colors and yet they all meld perfectly together.

C Hummel Kornell a/k/a C Hummel Wilson said...

Susan, So glad you are posting your paintings again. I have missed them. This one has a beautiful beginning. Can't wait to see the finished product.

Watercolors by Susan Roper said...

I thank you three ladies for the encouragement on this. It is, so far, waaaaay outside of my usual color palette so I needed that. I want to try to flip-flop everything I know about atmospheric perspective and have the brightest color in the mid-background and the lightest and most muted in the foreground to see what happens with this. There were softly-colored sage bushes and chimisa in the foreground and along the river banks so I am hoping their opaque qualities in the foreground will make this work. If it does not work, I will go back to what I know is correct. But, for some reason, I am feeling this approach is working, up to this point, to show depth in this short and wide composition. Hang in with me on this to see if it continues to show that!