Painting a Nocturnal Scene


Previously I sent out a copy I made of a Tom Noble painting and talked about how copying an artist's work is a great way to learn. You then need to apply what you learned to a your own work and that is what I did in this painting. These old adobe buildings which are next door to the historic church San Francisco de Asis in Taos are a favorite subject of mine and I have painted them many times but never as a night scene. Inspired by Tom's painting, I used colors that I would not have thought of like lime green and orange. One key to a nocturnal is the lighting and I set the light on the adobe to move the viewer's eye in a way that would enhance the flight of the birds. The dark star-lit indigo sky creates a melancholy mood which also fits with the abandoned adobe buildings. My Taos workshop in May is still open and I would encourage you to join us for five days of painting this renowned art colony. I want to suggest to people who have previously taken this workshop that the subject matter can always be revisited with a new perspective like what I did in this painting. A new feature for this year is a preliminary warm-up session which will be very beneficial for new and experienced landscape artists. New plein air painters will find the warm-up session very helpful and give them the confidence for painting on location. Please email me if you are interested and I can give you more information. Happy Painting! Dennis Pendleton

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