I love early morning light as it first hugs the ground and lights up all the edges–tufts of grass, weeds, trees and other vagaries of the early morning. The overall golden look of this scene was very engaging and presented an enticing painting challenge as well.

I especially liked the bands of color in the landscape, from the foreground, which pulls you into the middle and backgrounds, to the serene blue sky. The buildings nestled in the foliage make for an interesting backdrop to the stark brightness of the sun’s rays across the ground. I played up the color contrast by using complementary cobalt blue in the shadow areas and orange and burnt sienna with white for the grasses in front of it. The grasses are mostly in bright areas where things start to wash out, so I purposely punched up the color and layers of paint to give definition to the upward facing hill.

The silhouetted shapes of the end of the left arbor say “grapevine” without delineating it, giving this painting its “Vineyard Road” title and hinting at the behind-the-scenes alchemy of the wine making business.