|Oneida Lake, Sylvan Beach, NY|
|Lake Erie Bay, Erie, PA|
But I decided at the beginning of the year that I was going to attack each month with gusto no matter what the subject matter! So, I spent the week reading up on what makes a good landscape - good. Elizabeth reminded us to keep it simple - to edit out elements and then edit some more. Well that's good - I like simple. But where to put the remaining elements???
|The City Dock, Centennial Tower, Erie PA|
So before tackling this month's sketches I came up with some "Guidelines".
- Start with the Golden Rule and the Rule of Thirds. There is a lot to these, but basically what I do is make sure there is a nice 1/3 to 2/3's ratio in a piece, with the focal point of the piece near the intersection of the two. The pieces is divided into 1/3rd sections ( think 9 patch). The horizon line should be at one of these thirds - not in the middle.
- Strong Lines and Underlying Value will ground the piece nicely. You can use both to lead the viewer's eye to the focal point.
- Add some kind of interest point to the picture. Now that's not to say that sky, mountains, meadows aren't enough - but a landscape is that much better with a spark of something - "non-nature" in it.
- Three is good - One is better. Going back to motto - "Keep it simple stupid" - just one main object in a picture can be much better than 5!
- Use geometric shapes when placing key elements in a landscape. So if you have three main objects - have them form a triangle.
- Find a foreground interest. Now this kind of landscape isn't for everyone - but for me - they're much more interesting.
- Don't be afraid to crop out the foreground land or the background sky - it will help keep your focal point the main interest and keep the 1/3's ratio correct.
So what have you been up to creatively?