Andy’s River, oil on canvas, 26×40

This bend in the Umpqua River caught my attention when the setting sun broke through the clouds and lit up the entire riverbed. The fading light flowed like water down the center of the riverbed, illuminating the background behind the cool shadow areas of the foreground. I wanted to capture that light.

I was also intrigued by the play of color temperature from one side of the river to the other with its high contrast in light and dark and the interplay of cool and warm colors. The foreground is predominately cool colors contrasted against the warm color brightness of the water and the trees in direct sunlight on the mountain.

I purposely heightened the color contrast between the rocks in the river and surrounding landscape using manganese purple in my mixtures for the rocks against the cool shadow blues. I heightened the brightest values with more pure paint mixtures to increase their presence in space. The upper sky and associative hill on the right side are lighter and brighter than on the left to create a mood and ambiance that gives the scene more depth.