Low clouds and snow squalls!
It has suddenly turned into winter, at least temperature-wise. It was in the teens all day today, including this morning when I went looking for another winter landscape.
This scene is a familiar spot. I’ve painted here several times before. With lots of overcast and flat looking skies, the passing snow squalls created some interest in the sky. This area is in New York, just across the state line from Vermont. It has many farms and open, flat lying fields. I’m always attracted to the rhythm of the curves in the plowed fields. Having a just a bit of snow cover highlights the curvi-ness as it did today.
The winter landscape is generally a study in contrasts. When there is deep snow cover, then value contrasts dominate. When snow cover is light, the temperature contrasts, as in this painting, stand out most.
On this kind of day, there is much contrast between warm earth tones and cool grays and blues in sky, forests, mountans and trees. The task is to depict these contrasts while still encouraging unity and harmony in the overall work. For this painting, using a red – blue combination for the darker clouds and squalls brings warm color into the cool sky. A lighter version of this same mixture is also used in the distant mountains and in some of the distant tree masses.