Diana Probst, Cambridge Artist

Electronic Critique: Methodist Chapel

methodist_chapel_levelsI finished the Methodist Chapel painting while I was outside, and it was great, and I really enjoyed the process. Then I took it home and dried it, and a bad thing happened; I saw what it actually looked like.

Under the tree where we were painting, with glossy paints, and the bright sun helping everywhere else, and all the colours really fresh, it looked great. Once the colours started coming through and it was in my office, I saw I had a problem. I don’t have drama or change in this painting. I have a lot of mid and light tones, and nothing really dark. I hadn’t realised this while painting because it was so bright, and the colours on my palette looked great. I thought I had a whole lot more range than I did. However, I made a greyscale version of my painting as it was when I finished it, and low and behold, the colour level test said everything was in the middle. I took another under controlled lighting conditions, and that’s the one above. I don’t have a real dark/light division. I’ve got a few smears of darkness in the trees and the roundabout and the windows, and I have a small peak of white that’s the window frames. I don’t have a dip in the middle where I’d like to see one – I have a peak instead.

I don’t have the tools to deal with this yet – I’ve never painted oils in the open air before, and the sunlight took me by surprise. I’ll be taking a closer look at the Sith Apprentice’s version, to see how she handled the dark/light problem. I might also add a layer to this when it’s properly dry, but for the moment I’m going to wait and see how it goes. It’s better than the first electronic examination, and I’ll see how I like it once it’s settled for a bit.