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Remember the several outages we had last Fall?
For art you need much light.This was the scene
from when we brought McKenzie to Apple Hill


So I thought to do something with a lot of contrast,
like scratch board, where you scratch
the color of ink into the 4 inches board. It kept me
busy by a camping light. I’ve come this far…
about half way:)


Am ever making use of the seasons
to continue my learning about painting. While birders look for birds, and photographers
look for a pleasing design, and light fall,
here I am looking for scenes that would make
a memorable plein air.

W-entrance of Yosemite Nat. Park

Never forget the power of the entrance into a scene.
It is a real attention grabber, even though there
is not much else to this scene.
People will say, “Oh the water is
beautiful,” or
“the shade of the trees is just so refreshing.”

A few caveats with this view. The focus with
the light grey rocks is too much in the middle.
Also with a view like this, learn to crop.
Meaning, divide the height and the width in three
parts, to make if more pleasing to the eye.
A few inches can make much difference
and be rated superb, instead of okay.

I know it’s not fair to be evaluated, but many
tend to judge these kinds of things automatically.



Yosemite Falls

Whenever we are in nature, the views are seldom
perfect for a plein air. What I first look for
are patterns in the landscape.
This wall next to the waterfall Yosemite Falls
has some interesting
lines and patterns,
and a nice contrast with the falls.




At the Sequoias in Yosemite Nat. Park.

What artists often forget is how the viewer “reads”
the landscape. Most often, how they have
learned to write (from left to right),
unless the center of interest is on the right.
Others may read from right to left, or from top
to bottom. So, it’s important to know
who you are painting for.




Almost at the S. Entrance, on our way out.

You might be completely taken by this view,
but newbie viewers need something to intrigue
them, otherwise it just might look like another
photo to them. “What is he doing?”
would be the first question.
There you have it – intrigue.

But … also beware to thoughtlessly copy this view.
The more one travels with the eye to the horizon,
the more purple the color needs to become.
This is opposite!
You could make the tan/peach looking part,
a green, or a grey-ish, leaning to purple,
or change the background completely.


What nature is able to teach you is phenomenal!


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31 thoughts on “ALL SEASONS – HOW TO READ A VIEW

  1. You did that by a camping light? Well done, you are so talented. On my way out the door but managed to squeak in a link. I look at that view and think, “I will fall on my butt trying to climb around those rocks.”
    Hope all is well with you.


  2. I love patterns in a landscape too, especially in rocks and cliffs. They make a picture more interesting and grabs the attention of the viewer. But beautiful scenery like this always grabs my attention. I am a total mountain girl. 🙂 It is interesting to know how a reader views a picture. My attention always remains in the center I think.


    1. Great to meet another mountain girl! We are courageous and versatile! And used to solve problems. Many thanks for commenting. Fee free to join the photo link list anytime with an image of your own, by clicking on “Click here” on the bottom of the post. Hope to see you there soon!


  3. It’s nice to see the park when it’s not covered with snow. I visited in Winter and the landscape was totally different than what I see in your lovely photos!

    Happy Tuesday, Jesh!


    1. When we lived in Los Angeles we always went for a week in the summer. Only was there for a weekend i winter. You are right – it totally changes the whole place. Hard to stand the cold the whole day though! With kevin Zadai, he had a near-death experience that totally change his life.


  4. Hello Jesh.
    It always comes when I try it!
    “This link already exists for this Thumbnail Linky Lists. Duplicate entries for the same list are not allowed. If your link is not showing, this might be a moderated list and the link has not been approved yet. If you have further questions, contact the blog owner.”

    Maybe you have to delete me so that I could link again!
    Greetings Elke


  5. You are so fortunate to live close to Yosemite National Park! It is so beautiful and I’m sure you see many new things with every visit. A painter’s, and nature lover’s, paradise


    1. It’s now about 3 1/2 hr. drive, but worth every minute of it. We started going there though every summer for a week when we were living in Los Angeles, 5 hours from there. So much healing from traffic lines and noise in this green paradise – well said!


  6. I love your sketch of apple tree trunk! Wish to see when it is ready. Yosemite park looks fabulous. Have a fine new week jesh!


    1. Riitta, thank you so much for the encouragement. Yosemite Nt. Park never gets boring. Always something new to see in these high mountains and 3 stunning waterfalls, and big Sequoia trees..


  7. Interesting about the left to right – it is the same in photography, But at some stage I read we should put the subject on the right, otherwise the viewer starts at the subject on the left and then their eye travels out of the picture, whereas with the subject on the right, they stop at the subject. I always thought painting outdoors felt like such a luxury to have so much time that one could just sit and paint. How wonderful that would be.


    1. So true, Jill … for right handed people. Since I am left handed, I always start the “reading” on the left:) the right for me, is often, an afterthought:) For painters: one makes the time, like for dancing, you make the time, put other things aside:)


  8. It’s always interesting to learn more about your thought processes in creating your beautiful art. Especially love this wonderful area you show today.


    1. Thank you David. If I’m honest, it has become an addiction, haha. If you have read the life of some painters of van Gogh, Rembrandt, hopper, etc. you understand if’s more than fun.


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