Thinking about mountainsSeptember 24, 2022
I’ve been thinking about mountains (as one does). I’ve realized that I want to improve some of my own paintings of mountains by:
- Increasing the sense of form. I, along with most landscape painters, struggle with depicting these forms as more than simple 2d shapes. I think the sheer scale and distance of these things makes it hard for us to get a grasp on just how three dimensional they are.
- Increasing the variety of materials and shapes. I can get very tunnel-visioned with one sort of material or shape language. But a lot of mountains have different layers and materials contributing to their shape. It breaks things up nicely and gives it a natural feel.
- More color variety. I’m definitely guilty of this one. I paint far too many mountains with overly simple color palettes. It’s a bit like painting a figure as the same muted brown-ish color, in different values. It’s not necessarily wrong and it can be done well, but it’s not really observing all of the wonderful variation that nature is providing for us.
- More interesting lighting and cast shadows. I think this goes along with the form, but if we’re thinking about form then we can also consider how mountains might cast shadows on one another. It opens up a lot of opportunities for interesting shapes and compositions.