Landscapes Curriculum 1

This video is part 1 in a Landscape Curriculum designed for self-taught artists. This discussion reviews many techniques and approaches that can be used to create compelling landscapes in a wide range of art media.

Concepts like atmospheric perspective, texture, and light are explained in great depth. Discussion led by Art Prof Clara Lieu and Teaching Artists Cat Huang and Lauryn Welch.

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Oil Pastel & Watercolor in Southern Utah

Video Walkthrough

  • Often it’s easy with landscapes to look at color literally: the sky is blue, the grass is green.
  • You really do have to take the initiative to search for more unusual colors in the landscape.
  • Sometimes the landscape itself is a strange color, like the oranges and red tones at Bryce Canyon.
  • In Sunday newspaper comic strips, cartoonists were given specific colors they had to use due to the way newspapers were printed.
  • In linear perspective, the horizon line is the eye level, where the ocean meets the sky.
  • The horizon line in a landscape provides a structure and a stable ground.
  • Sometimes the horizon line is more implied in the landscape and not clearly defined.
  • Consider the weight of various parts of the landscape: the weight of a mountain, vs. something light like a willow tree’s leaves.
  • Even in a more abstract landscape, weight still plays an important role.
  • Lighting can truly make or break a landscape, it establishes a mood for the scene.
  • Artificial light and natural light are very different from each other, it’s really worth it to learn the fundamentals of how light works.
  • Lighting plays a huge role in how movies are designed and produced, there are lighting crews for every movie.
  • Texture is often a big part of how the art media in the landscape is handled.
  • Atmospheric perspective is where the objects in the foreground are more detailed, high in contrast.
  • As objects in atmospheric perspective recede back into the space, they become blurrier and lower in contrast.
  • Repeating objects throughout the landscape, at different scales is an easy way to show depth.
  • Small figures in the background with large figures in the foreground show depth through the variety of scale.
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Watercolor in Utah: Goblin Valley & Mushrooms

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