|'Island Moon' 11x14 pastel ©Karen Margulis $145 Paypal|
|A collection of my Night Paintings|
- Pick the right time to go out and paint or take photos. The best time for night photos is actually just after sunset when there is still some light in the sky. Known as the 'Blue Hour' this is the time when the sky has colors such as rich deep blues and purples. After this blue hour the sky becomes an uninteresting inky black. To read more about the blue hour, see my post here
- Look beyond the photo... put color in the darks. Typically point and shoot photos don't always do a good job capturing the colors at night unless you take time to find the right settings. Photos tend to be underexposed and too dark. If we try to paint what we see in the photo we might end up with an overly dark painting and paint the land black. Colors are more muted and dull in low light but they are there! This is the perfect opportunity to use those dull browns and greens and purples in the dark areas. Avoid using black!
- Pay attention to the values and designing with the lights. In an evening scene you will be using colors that are mostly dark values and some very light values from a light source (moonlight, streetlights, etc). If you have middle values these are present most often in areas that are lit. It is important to pay attention to how you place the lights. You don't want them to appear spotty and since they will draw the eye due to the strong contrast against the darks, be sure to place them in places where you want the eye to travel.