Something of Value

Walk On By #2, pastel, 6x6"
I say it all the time to my students...

"It doesn't matter what color you choose, as long as you have the right value!"

It makes sense to most, but I do understand that it is a difficult concept when you are first learning to paint.

In my last class I asked my students to predict what the color of the sky would be in a painting based on a black and white photo. The answers varied, based on the value they were looking at and the sky color that made sense to them.

Below is the photo without the colors that I chose for this composition. Notice that there are four values. The sky is the lightest value and the ground is the second lightest. The distant hills are a medium dark and the upright trees and bushes are the darkest.

What would guess the sky color to be?

Walk On By, pastel, 6x6"

It could be anything... yellow, pink, blue, orange or violet as long as the value is correct. This composition could probably be done 100 times with different hues, but would look the same in black and white as long as the value of the hue was the same.

I painted the version at the top, Walk On By #2, using some different color choices, but keeping true to the values.

Keep playing with your pastels!

Judy Albright Fine Art


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