This is just the kind of scene that appeals to my visual sense of light and allows me to apply expressive contrasts of value, color and temperature. When painting the typical red barn in anything other than winter, it is likely that the contrast of the complementary colors red and green will present themselves – red barns, green fields. The problem with that combination is that it can appear stark and even trite if handled too directly.
In this painting, the choice was to lay in the fields with the local color which was a fairly intense yellow-green. In reality, the barns were all covered in a deep cool red which varied little and was modified very little by either direct or bounced light. For the painting, a conscious attempt was made to vary the color of the barns by way of temperature. The closest, middle barn received color very similar to the local color of the actual buildings. In this case, it is a deep, violet-red. It is darker in color than the two other barns and is a near direct complement of the color used for the surrounding fields. This value and intensity, combined with the strong overlapping of the two other barns, forcefully pushes this building toward the viewer and makes it the central focal point. The other two barns have a great deal of orange-red on the visible sides. Even this color has a complementary relationship with surrounding fields. More importantly, the warmth of this orange-red and its contrast with the violet-red suggests the presence of bounced light from the sunlight fields.
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