Fan Ho's Bounded Light
One way to capture light is to surround it with darkness.
The light enters the dark space and casts shadows from each of the forms.
The key figure appears backlit in the central region of light.
If you follow around the outside border, it's almost all in deep shadow.
The charcoal fires and cigarette smoke made for bad air quality, but it was a gift to photographers.
When he introduces color into this scheme, it's a revelation.
Books:Magnum Contact Sheets
The Japanese language has a word for light streaming through a forest: komorebi.
|Photo of komorebi by James Gurney|
It also conveys a sense of nostalgic longing for something or someone far away.
Painting a Sunset Glow Effect
|Arthur Parton, Lake Scene, 1876|
Several artists have accomplished this effect of a big gradation around the sun, which influences everything around the source.
It's kind of difficult to paint this situation from real life because you can hurt your eyes looking straight into the sun. If it's veiled behind enough clouds, you can do it. Scenes like this are composed from memory and imagination.
Russian seascape painter Aivazovsky often applied the effect to seascapes. He suppresses contrasts in the far waves, allowing the big gradation to envelop them.
|Franz Richard Unterberger, Venice Under Sunset|
Unterberger captures an effect that is more of a perceptual impression than a photographic transcription.
Hopper's Light: Evocative or Illogical?
|Sun in an Empty Room, by Edward Hopper|
|Rooms by the Sea by Edward Hopper, collection Yale Art Gallery|
Painting a Spotlight Effect
New YouTube video (Link to YouTube) explains how to focus sunlight on one part of a plein-air painting using a spotlight underpainting. The car is a 1962 Chevy Impala.
|Fishermen on Santa Monica pier, 1981|
|Comparison of light temperatures via Reddit|
Painting While Facing the Light
How can you capture light in a painting while facing toward the light? I've got a new video that you can watch here or on YouTube.
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Contre Jour Lighting
|Screenshot from the game Fallout 4|
We painters tend to think of these beams in two-dimensional terms, but it's good to remember that they occupy a specific volume of 3D space between the source and the subject.
|Still from "The Man Who Wasn't There" directed by |
the Coen Brothers, cinematography by Roger Deakins
|Albert Bierstadt, Lander's Peak|
The light takes on its form as it passes through the opening in the clouds, and you can see its effect as it travels to the selective areas it illuminates.
Light and Form, Part 1
Color and Light: A Guide for the Realist Painter