I mentioned in an earlier post that I was working on a new version of Three Ridges in Cloud to hang over my fireplace in our mountain home. I finished it this week and I thought I’d share it.
This was an interesting experience. While I paint the same subjects a lot, Three Ridges being a favorite, I don’t usually try to duplicate paintings. Sometimes I’ll do a study in watercolor and then an oil painting, but that’s different because there is no chance they’ll be the same. In this case, I really liked the original painting, but I needed a bigger version of it because of the space where I wanted to hang it. I thought about painting from the painting rather than the original photograph, but decided against it for a number of reasons, not the least of which I didn’t want to minimize my creativity.
During the process of painting I found myself not liking the new one as well. First of all, my brush technique has changed quite a bit. I painted the original in January and February of 2015, which wasn’t that long ago. However, I’m still new at this, so I’m evolving quickly. In the last year I’ve read and studied books and sites, and I’ve taken a few classes. Now I dab more and make fewer long strokes. This difference is very obvious in the clouds. I also liked the muted colors in the original, but I’ve been experimenting more with bolder colors, so I captured more color in the sky and the trees in the foreground. When I finished it on Tuesday (my birthday) I decided I liked it better. The additional color gives it an added richness. I still like them both a lot – mostly because it’s a very pretty scene and a nice photograph. I was lucky to be there on the day I took it.
Below are both versions with the most recent one first. The original is 36×18 and the new version is 48×24. It will look nice above my fireplace – much better than the print left there by the previous owners. I consider it a nice birthday gift to myself.