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Snowmelt Starting

Snowmelt Starting

It seems a painter is always a bit behind the times, and here I am presenting a scene of melting snow when the daffodils are already blooming. This was about a month ago~I was driving home in the early evening and glanced over to see clouds lit up, backlighting this wonderful oak and a rivulet of melting snow. I didn’t have my camera ready because I was driving but I grabbed an old receipt and a pen and did a quick sketch while waiting for the light to turn.

I continue to be disappointed by digital imaging. I have spent weeks building subtle layers of color in the snow, only to have the digital camera apply Occam’s Razor. Hm. At any rate, Happy April!

33 thoughts on “Snowmelt Starting

  1. Lovely.

  2. What a lovely little rivulet you found with an amazing sky! I see beautiful blues, purples, reds, and oranges in this painting. No gray or anything dull. I bet it’s wonderful in person though!

    The transfer of image pixels from our own computers, and Photoshop to the web can be really frustrating when it comes to colors.
    Two things I do when my images begin to look really bad online-outside of Photoshop I mean: is re-calibrate my monitors, and make sure my setting for images on the web is still set to SRGB and didn’t get changed somehow.

    Oddly enough last week I thought my images were looking a bit gray online- (posted on the blog and flickr) so I got out my Spyder color calibration kit and calibrated my monitors. It was overdue.

    The colors do look better. I hope they look good to you too!

    Do you calibrate your monitor and have set your images to the web to use SRGB color space? Browsers use a limited color space and force us to use SRGB to have our images look presentable or something like that.

  3. P.S. You’re probably talking about the translucency and depth that we can’t see not colors. šŸ™‚

    How’s the Gallery coming along?

    1. I had no idea we had any control whatsoever of the color range, either on our own computer or on the web. Thank you for sharing that information, Deborah! You’re right, though. The colors looked fine on my camera screen. Do I get the Spyder kit online? I imagine so~everything is, isn’t it?
      The gallery is coming along. I’m still waiting for the signs and am getting geared up for an opening. I’ll take lots of pictures and post them soon šŸ™‚

      1. For Spyder you can look here:

        I have no experience with those products, but clicking any one of them will bring up a page with lots of information, including user reviews.

      2. Neat! Thank you

  4. Nice vivid colors – a bit different venture for you. šŸ™‚

    1. Thank you, Eliza. You are right. Now that I have most of my paintings hung in the gallery, I realize they are all the same color/values! Oh no! I’ll be working to change that up a bit.

      1. Change and growth is good!

  5. Wow, all this talk is way over my head, but I love the colors. Happy April to you to Melissa. We had snow last night. šŸ™‚

    1. Thank you, Mary! We have snow falling right now.

  6. Beautiful. N.

  7. “Snowmelt” always has evoked good memories for me: dripping icicles, the crinkle of ice breaking on ponds, the trickle of flowing water. Of course, there’s a thin line between snow melt and mud season, but I suppose we have to take the good with the bad.

    With the original as a comparison, I suppose it’s inevitable that you’d be disappointed with the digital image, but to be perfectly honest, when I first looked at the painting, it was the laying in the snowfield that attracted me. So, at least some of the lovely effect you’ve worked so hard to create came through the screen. I like it very much.

    1. Oh, I am so glad to hear that~thank you!
      It seems I was wrong about being behind the times….When I awoke this morning I discovered snow in my garden. ERK!

  8. I know how frustrating photographing paintings and drawings can be. My daughter is a portrait artist in her spare time and in person, the shading and lines create wonderful depth and atmosphere. Once on a computer screen, so much is often lost and a picture can look flat. I still think the image you’ve shared is very lovely though, Melissa. I like the vibrancy of the oranges and reds against the blue in the snow and the sky. The distant silhouette of the tree is appealing too. šŸ™‚

    1. Hi Jane,
      I could have sworn I replied to you, but it looks like I didn’t. That’ll teach me to read my emails on my phone!
      It sure is frustrating, but I am coming to accept that that is just how it is. Thank you so much for your kind comments. I do love that tree. We see that around here~lone oaks hanging out in the middle of cornfields. One wonders how long they can persist.

      1. I think you did reply actually! Maybe the comment disappeared. šŸ™‚

      2. Oh! Ok, good. šŸ™‚

  9. I’m relieved to hear I’m not alone in this, Jane. It really is frustrating. I’m glad you like the painting, though šŸ™‚

  10. So sorry to hear the computer is messing with your images. Much of the calibration stuff is over my head, but I somehow imagine it being worse when you’re shooting a picture of a painting and then posting it. Good luck in figuring out a solution. I just recently discovered that my WP “theme” isn’t entirely “compatible” with iPads or iPhones. I’m supposed to upgrade the theme, but hardly have time to post or visit other blogs. Messing with the theme is a non-starter… at least for now.

    1. It is never ending, isn’t it? It hadn’t even occurred to me to check that.

  11. In addition to Deborah’s advice, camera sensor sensitivity is important. If you are using a small digcam, the performance will not be the same as a more robust dslr. Also, if you are shooting jpegs the camera processes them which may not give you the quality you are looking for. Then, every time a digital image is processed or transferred, there can be image file degradation. Add to that, when you see an image on screen, it is larger than the back of your camera, so naturally those differences(such as white balance) will show up more. Most browsers, like IE, Chrome etc are not color managed. I am rarely happy with how my images look on WordPress and have basically thrown in the towel. Most viewers’ monitors are not calibrated anyway so you never can be sure what something will look like to someone else.

    That must have been an amazing sunset.

    1. It sure was.
      What you’re saying makes perfect sense. What I’m referring to is the evident difference in how a digital camera sees as opposed to film. Back in the day I had a professional photographer shoot my paintings. They were lovely. Came the day he switched to digital, and suddenly the nuances of paint disappeared. Digital is fantastic in making it possible to share my work easily, though. However it makes the work look so bad I question the value of sharing it! LOL

      1. It is possible the photographer did not handle the file properly and if it was long ago, then sensors have improved. šŸ™‚

  12. Those are great clouds in the distance. The prominent red in the foreground made me think of melted wax.

    1. Thanks, Steve. The rivulet does look like melted wax, doesn’t it? I don’t think I have the colors quite right but I do remember it was just lit up against the snow.

      1. Van Gogh and Gauguin didn’t have the colors quite right either, so you’re in good company.

      2. LOL! You have made my day.

  13. Wow, your rivulet of melting snow is stunningly red! And what an incredible sky. I’m amazed that you could remember this scene from a few moments waiting at a red light. I find your snow has wonderful snowy atmosphere when I zoom in to the image until I can sort of see the brushstrokes.

    I am mostly baffled by digital colour. There are a lot of things to consider. Deborah’s ideas sound quite good.

    1. Thank you, Myriam. I don’t like snow at all, but I do enjoy painting it.

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