Saturday, August 8, 2015

Daybreak Dining - Study 1

Daybreak Dining - Study 1
9 x 12
Pastel on Wallis Sanded Paper

This is a study of a Gila Woodpecker dining on a cactus flower/fruit in the early morning sunlight. I'm not feeling particularly good about this painting. I do like the subject and I like the composition. What I struggled with was deciding how much detail to work into the cactus. What drew me to this image was how the light hits the woodpecker and the tops of the cactus and the glow of the thorns. I'm wondering if perhaps it's the brown under painting. Perhaps it should be terracotta and/or gold to warm it up. Hmmm..yes...that may be it. Eventually, this will be a much larger painting- 19 x 25....IF I can work this out to something I like better.

The original resource photo has a background of trees - which I thought detracted from the focus - the cactus and Gila Woodpecker. I experimented with the photo on my tablet and colored in the background with sky. I decided I liked sky better than the green background. I may try it again with the trees instead.


  1. Your light and shadows are changing, more confident and deeper contrasts. I really like the direction you're going.